Human Resources Minister Richard Riot says this shows commitment to adhere to international labour standards, especially in providing greater social and labour protection for workers.
PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia is the first among Asean member countries and the fifth country in Asia to ratify the International Labour Convention on minimum wage.
Human Resources Minister Richard Riot Jaem, who represented Malaysia at the conference, said Malaysia deposited the documents (the instrument of ratification) to the International Labour Organisation (ILO) at the 105th International Labour Conference in Geneva, Switzerland.
The instrument of ratification was deposited to ILO Director-General Guy Ryder as a sign of ratification of the International Labour Convention on minimum wages, namely Convention No 131: Minimum Wage Fixing Convention 1970 (C131), he said.
“This Convention is an international instrument which outlines the method of determining the minimum wage and related matters to be observed by the countries that ratified the convention,” he said in a statement here today.
Present at the convention was Malaysian Employers Federation Executive Director Shamsuddin Bardan; Malaysian Trades Union Congress Secretary-General N Gopal Krishnam; and the Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public and Civil Services Secretary-General Lok Yim Pheng.
According to Riot, the Malaysian Government, as a member of the ILO, had previously ratified the 16th ILO Convention, which is still in force.
The move is a positive measure taken to improve Malaysia’s national labour standards in every aspect since the minimum wage was introduced in 2013.
“It also demonstrates Malaysia’s commitment to adhere to international labour standards, especially in providing greater social and labour protection for workers.”
Elaborating, Riot said the government had held discussions and consultations and sought the views of ILO in the National Wages Consultative Council before deciding to ratify the International Labour Convention.
He said the government believed the system and the basic structure of the country’s existing minimum wage was in accordance with the requirements of articles under the International Labour Convention.
“The government hopes that with this ratification, Malaysia will be able to improve the implementation of the existing minimum wage policy in the country, in line with the objective of becoming a high-income nation by 2020.”
In the meantime, Riot urged employers to fully support the implementation of the basic minimum wage to improve the lives of workers, especially those in the low-income group.
He said the ministry would notify all parties, including the media, regarding the ratification of the convention and the need to comply with all articles stipulated in the convention by all employers.
The four-day International Labour Conference began on June 6.