PH workers' wages vastly lower than US, Denmark

Posted at 12/13/12 2:59 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Workers in the Philippines' manufacturing sector took home an average of $1.41 per hour worked in 2010, a stark contrast from an hourly wage of $5.41 in Brazil, $23.32 in the United States, and $34.78 in Denmark, the International Labor Organization reported.

The data, taken from the US Department of Labor, shows how varied wages are across countries, ILO stressed.

"In spite of the faster growth in real average wages in emerging regions over the last decade, absolute differences in wage levels across countries and regions remain considerable," ILO said in its Global Wage Report 2012/13.

ILO noted hourly wage in China's manufacturing sector was $1.36 in 2008, and compensation in India was $1.17 per hour in 2007.

"Although these differences are measured in current US dollars and therefore are dependent on exchange rate fluctuations, they nonetheless point towards the persistence of wide gaps in wages and labor productivity across the world," ILO added.

ILO found monthly average wages globally grew by a slower 1.2% in 2011, from an expansion of 2.1% in 2010 and 3% in 2007.

"Real average wage growth has remained far below pre-crisis levels globally, going into the red in developed economies, although it has remained significant in emerging economies," ILO said.

Moreover, workers are getting a smaller share of their companies' income as this mostly go to profits--such as paying shareholders' dividends.

"A decrease in the labor share not only affects perceptions of what is fair – particularly given the growing concerns about excessive pay among CEOs (chief executive officers) and in the financial sector – it also hurts household consumption and can thus create shortfalls in the aggregate demand," ILO said.