A minimum wage is a minimum remuneration an employee can earn over a specific period. The minimum wage is the wage rate set through collective bargaining or by law, which establishes the lowest pay at which labor may be hired.
Purposes of setting the minimum wage
The purpose of minimum wages is to shield employees from unfairly low pay. They contribute to ensuring everyone receives fair remuneration. By encouraging the right to equal pay for work of equal worth, minimum wages can also be one component of a policy to combat and lessen poverty.
Workers are protected against unfairly low compensation by the minimum wages. The minimum wage generates sufficient cash for people to afford clothing, housing, and food. It stops employers from abusing their employees.
The minimum wage can be viewed as a policy to lessen poverty and inequality. It advocates for the right to receive equal compensation for equally valuable work.
Challenges faced with the Minimum wage
Periodically, there is a push for a higher minimum wage to address the issues facing the working poor. In some ways, the debate may be less about economics and more about attitude: Social progressives consider the minimum wage as a policy that may stimulate the economy and boost worker prosperity. Conservatives typically see it as an assault on free markets.
If you are a business, the potential rise in labor costs is the immediate problem with a higher minimum wage. It's particularly challenging if you work in a sector with razor-thin margins, like food service, where many of your employees make minimum wage. Even if you don't hire people at the minimum wage, a rise in the minimum wage may cause your staff to be dissatisfied with their pay, pushing you to increase your rates.
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Driving Unemployment Rates
A second problem with the minimum wage some economists argue that it might increase unemployment. That's an argument free-market economists often put forward. The argument is that there's only so much money for payroll, and if wages go up, business owners won't afford it.
Minimum wage in Africa
Most countries in Africa have a minimum wage. Below are the 20 countries with the highest minimum range.
1. Seychelles = $456
There is a government-mandated minimum wage in Seychelles, and no employee may be paid less than this amount. Employers in Seychelles who don't pay the minimum wage risk penalty from the government of Seychelles.
2. Libya = $322
The minimum wage became valid on 01 March 2011. In September 2022, the Libyan government increased the minimum wage. Minimum wages in Libya are set by a consultative council comprising representatives from the government and representatives of trade unions and employers.
3. Morocco = $315
Morocco established minimum pay standards for workers in urban and rural areas as early as 1936 by passing minimum wage legislation. In September 2022, a 6% increase in the minimum wage for the public sector, a 5% increase for those employed in commercial businesses and services was enacted by the cabinet.
4. Gabon = $256
The government does not enforce the aforementioned minimum wage in the country's informal economy, which employs the vast majority of people. In addition, the mining and timber industries, which employ most foreign labor forces, have not implemented labor law rules. Employers in these industries have a history of mistreating employees, especially foreign workers, by underpaying them, firing them without cause, and even physically abusing them.
5. South Africa = $242 per month
The government stated that wage earners must be able to sustain themselves and their families at a level that is both socially and economically acceptable. This is done to preserve a good standard of living.
6. Mauritius = $240
The national minimum wage was adopted in 2018. This was done with the noble goal of boosting low-paid workers' salaries and increasing their living conditions, regardless of gender.
7. Equatorial Guinea = $200
The minimum wage in Equatorial Guinea was introduced in 2003. Employers in Equatorial Guinea must pay the minimum wages set by the government, and most companies pay more than the government-established minimum wage.
8. Congo = $154
In the Republic of Congo, the minimum wage is set by law. Although the minimum wage is above the poverty threshold, few firms actually adhere to it, so there are minimal consequences. Rest periods and premium pay for overtime are frequently disregarded due to a lack of oversight or enforcement procedures.
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9. Algeria = $151
The minimum wage was introduced in 1978. Algerian employees had been calling the government to raise the minimum wage for years. This was due to what the government described as the collapse of buying power and the depreciation of the dinar against other currencies. The Algerian government increased the minimum wage in 2020.
10. Kenya = $140
Kenya's government determines the minimum wage rate by location, age and skill level. The minimum wage has been actively regulated since the country's independence in 1963. In May 2022, the minimum wage was increased by 12% to offset the cost of living.
11. Cabo Verde = $132
In 2020 the minimum wage increased by 2.2% from the $125 decreed in 2009.
12. Comoros Islands = $125
This amount became valid in January 2007.The Ministry of Finance and Labor sets the minimum wage. Unions have enough sway to negotiate minimum wage rates for positions requiring various skill levels.
13. Lesotho = $112
The minimum wage was introduced in 1992 by the government. Minimum wage set through decentralized collective bargaining. The minimum wage was then revised in May 2022.
14. Mozambique = $112
Mozambique has a different minimum wage for different industries. In 2009, most workers earned less than the relevant minimum wage. Payment less than the minimum wage was mostly among women in small enterprises. In April 2022, the government increased the minimum wage using different percentages for different sectors.
15. The Democratic Republic of Congo = $125
The minimum wage is the mandatory wage employers are required to pay the very least. DRC's minimum wage was last changed on 1-Jan-2009.
16. Tunisia = $110
The minimum wage in Tunisia is set and reviewed under The National Committee for Social Dialogue, chaired by the Minister of Social Affairs. Minimum wages were revised in Tunisia with effect from 01 December 2021.
17. Chad = $102
According to the terms of the government, minimum salaries are updated regularly. The labour inspectorate implements the wages outlined in this agreement, which the parties regard as having the force of law.
18. Ivory Coast = $102
The government sets the minimum wage for all occupations. In Côte d'Ivoire, labor unions have been successful in mandating that formal sector positions adhere to the government-mandated minimum wage. The 40-hour legal workweek necessitates overtime compensation.
19. Senegal = $94
The minimum wage in Senegal was set and signed by the President in 1996. This was done following the proposal by the Ministry of Labour and Employment. It then increased by 17% in 2019.
20. Liberia = $91 per month
In 2013, the government passed the minimum wage bill of $6 a day. This aimed to reduce poverty and improve the welfare of unskilled workers.
The majority of African nations have implemented minimum wage laws.