International Conference on Minimum Wage was Held in Georgia
17 / 10 / 2019
“Life assurance is the function of the State. In this country 130 000 people have the wage less than is needed for a person for living from month to month, i.e. less than the minimum subsistence established by the State. 23 500 people have wage less than GEL 100, that of course, creates a number of challenges and threats for the country. The fact is that the country has the ambition regarding fair environent, but the fair environment cannot be created until the business is able to appropriate money from the State Budget. Appropriation of money is reflected in the current minimum wage. You cannot find any employee who agrees to be employed for GEL 20 which means that the wages are paid through an envelope. Paying the wage through the envelope means that the adequate income tax is evaded from the State Budget.
Therefore, the Budget poses problems regarding the social challenges where the same subsistence allowance is GEL 40 to 60, that is much less than the minimum subsistence established by the National Statistics Office of Georgia. These are tremendous challenges. I am not saying that minimum wage and 1 component, the same progressive taxes, etc. will resolve all problems but adequate minimum wage is vital for a lot of our citizens", Irakli Petriashvili said. The following issues were discussed at the conference: Minimum wage systems in Europe, minimum wage in Georgia, economic importance of minimum wage and challenges and achievements of minimum wage policy in Ukraine and Armenia. Trade Union Confederation delivered the presentation on the content of their developed draft law.
Hosts of conference hope that a broad discussion and experience of other countries undergoing transformation will help them to better understand the issue and find opportunities to solve the problem. Politicians, analysts, journalists, civil society and business representatives from Germany, Georgia, Armenia, Ukraine, as well as representatives of international organisations and diplomatic missions attended the conference. The draft law prepared by the Trade Unions is planned to be initiated at the Parliament in the nearest future.