The debate on national minimum wages in South Africa

Last week in a twitter debate, former Reserve Bank governor, Tito Mboweni, said that no worker in South Africa should earn less than R3,000 per month.

He called for sectoral minimum wages to be enforced as opposed to a single minimum wage across the board as is being proposed by the government.

He said that instead of a minimum wage in South Africa we need a set of minimum wages.

Isobel Frye, director of the Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute says that we need to be clear on the distinction between a National Minimum Wage and a Living Wage.

We must ensure that the National Minimum Wage when it is introduced is a decent wage, with the ultimate goal of being a living wage.

Eustace Davie, a director at the Freemarket Foundation, says that imposing a national minimum wage under our current turbulent economic circumstances verges on insanity, an act of cruelty against the most vulnerable workers in the country.

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