MANILA, Philippines — Former senator and Team Unity senatorial bet Jinggoy Estrada on Monday declared his support to the wage hike petition of the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP).
In a statement, Estrada said the wage increase is necessary since most Filipinos are suffering from the almost weekly hikes in oil prices that has led to the spike in the price of food and other basic necessities.
Earlier, Estrada called on the country’s regional wage boards to buckle down to work and immediately release their recommended wage hike as ordered by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III.
As former chairman of the Senate labor committee, Estrada said the National Capital Region-Regional Wages and Productivity Board must study and act with dispatch on TUCP’s proposal to add P470 to the daily wage of workers in Metro Manila.
“We badly need the collective experience and wisdom of the wage boards on how to strike a balance between the interests of workers and their employers who pay their salaries,” he explained.
Estrada said there’s no doubt that higher wages are needed to keep pace with the increasing cost of living, but it must be in an amount that employers can afford. “It requires a delicate balancing act. If wages are increased too high, we run the risk of companies laying-off workers or worse, closing shop,” he stressed.