Sri Lanka’s government urge private sector wage increase: Plans not to legislate

Mar 26, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s new rulers urged the private sector to come up with a solution to increase wages and says the government would not like to force it to be legislated, Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning Harsha De Silva said.

“We are in a really dilemma right now having delivered 100 day promise of increasing the salaries of state sector employees. What about the private sector employees?” De Silva asked.

“We hope that we will not have to go to Parliament. We expect that we will never be forced to legislate over salary increases in the private sector because that is something we just do not want to do,”

“So we urge the private sector to work with us and to come up with a solution where both the private sector and the government would agree, based on some sort of productivity measure that can in the short term bring some stability to the labor force.”

De Silva said that the discussion has already started with labour unions, industries, and employee’s federation to come some kind of convergent as to how government deal with private sector salary increases.

Sri Lanka’s new rulers, interim budget proposed to increase salaries of state sector employees by 10,000 rupees and said 5,000 rupees out of that will be given in February on top a 3,300 increment given by the last regime and remaining 5,000 rupees will be given in June this year raising state sector employees’ salaries by 47 percent.

Accordingly the minimum wage of a state worker along with allowances will rise to 30,040 rupees.

Data shows about 1.3 million public employees will benefit from the concession.

The government also asked the private sector to increase the wage by 2500 rupees.