Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Wages and Inflation in South Africa

The trade union Solidarity warned that there exists a growing disparity in the salaries of workers and their chief executives . Solidarity said the country’s 10 highest-paid chief executives received about R47 million a year. Approximately R128,000 per day or R5,365 per hour.

The hourly remuneration of chief executives is approximately equal to the monthly pay of the average workers.

“If the chief executive takes a 15 minute tea break, this will cost his company R1,350 -- probably the most expensive cup of tea in the country,” the union said.

Official unemployment was 24.5% in September 2006 , almost the same as that of 24.4% in September 2000.

Inflation was nearing 6% but that food, medical, water and electricity, vehicle maintenance and housing increases were of 2% to 8% more than inflation .

The union warned that the 7.5% average wage settlement it expects this year will barely leave workers in the same position they were at the moment. It would not be a wage increase as such, but a wage maintainer or even a wage decrease .

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