Terry Bell reports that the combined trade unions represented at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) may at last be reaching an agreed position on a national minimum wage (NMW). A meeting of the labour group is due to be held on Tuesday to thrash out remaining differences, before a meeting with President Jacob Zuma on the following Tuesday.
Should agreement be reached on Tuesday, this meeting could be the prelude to a move within the next few months to establish a NMW. However, how, whether or when any such determination will apply to existing low wage determinations for domestic, farm and forestry workers remains to be decided. Government has indicated that a NMW of slightly more than R3,000 a month might be acceptable, which is roughly in line with the position of Fedusa. However, Cosatu has continued to press for a R4,500 minimum, although there have been hints this could drop to perhaps R3,700.