They will integrate joint commissions by economic constituency to discuss the minimum wage of 2023

The deadline for them to present their candidates for representatives is January 18, 2022.

In total there will be six joint commissions since for each economic district three must be integrated: one for non-agricultural activities, another for agricultural activities and the other, for export and maquila activities.

On December 22, the Government formalized the creation of Economic Circumscription One (CE1) that is made up of the department of Guatemala and Economic Circumscription Two (CE2) that integrates the rest of the country.

According to the ministry, the intention is to promote the proper setting of minimum wages in order to boost employment at the national level.

Organizations must submit to the General Secretariat of the Ministry of Labor (Mintrab) a list with a minimum of four candidates, indicating holders and alternates for each commission.

In addition, the requirements established in article 106 of the Labor Code must be accredited, in order to confirm the elements that serve to designate the members of the aforementioned commissions, based on what is established in chapter 17 of Recommendations of decisions of the Committee on Freedom of Association of the Governing Body of the International Labor Organization (ILO).

The employer sector has seen in a positive way the differentiation by economic circumscriptions to take into account factors of the different areas of the country; however, he recently stated that the application methodology must be analyzed so that it is not constantly changed.

Meanwhile, the union organizations indicated that, as a labor sector, they are against it because in their opinion, what is sought is to lower the existing minimum wages.

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For 2022 the Government established an increase of 4.75% for the minimum wages of the different economic activities, and according to the authorities of the Mintrab, the new modality will not lower wages, but will be the base on which they will start for the following years .

The Mintrab arguments

During this year, the ministry exposed in the National Salary Commission the need for a new way of applying regional minimum wages, for which it is necessary to know data such as socioeconomic indicators, employment, prices, productivity and others.

He also argued that while the minimum wage increased by 5% per year on average in the period from 2016 to 2019, the average labor income in the National Employment and Income Surveys (Enei) in the first semester of that period increased 3% and in the second, 1.15%.

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He added among his arguments to seek salaries by constituencies, that 43.1% of the salaried employed population has incomes with 32.2% below the minimum wage in the national rural area. The agricultural and non-agricultural salary for 2019 was at Q2 thousand 742.37 but in the rural area, the average labor income was Q1 thousand 860.57 and in the urban area, outside the metropolitan area, it was Q2 thousand 418.56.

In recent years, during September each commission formed has presented its report to the National Salary Commission (CNS). This, in turn, discussed them and listened to the position of the labor, employer and government sectors, to later transfer that information to the President of the Republic to make a decision on the current salary in the following year.

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