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KARACHI: Pakistan Yarn Merchants Association (PYMA), while expressing serious concerns over the Sindh government’s move to set a minimum wage of Rs25,000 against the minimum wage of Rs20,000 announced in the federal budget, and demanded Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah to fix the minimum wage in Sindh at Rs20,000 on an equal basis like the federation and other provinces, so that the cost of businesses and industries does not increase.

Hanif Lakhany, Senior Vice Chairman & VP, FPCCI, Farhan Ashrafi, Vice Chairman PYMA & Convener, FPCCI Yarn Trading Standing Committee, said that business and industries are already suffering from serious crises caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and are struggling to survive.

In the federal budget, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin had announced a minimum wage of Rs20,000. Keeping this in mind, other provinces also set minimum wages, but Sindh province announced a minimum wage of Rs25,000 instead of Rs20,000, contrary to the ground realities. Which is by no means applicable to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the severe economic crisis.

“Sindh government’s decision to set a minimum wage of Rs25,000 would affect those businesses and industries the most, who apart from other provinces, also do their business in Sindh and deploy their staff in the provinces from time to time. In such a scenario, how can those institutions afford to pay higher minimum wages in Sindh than other provinces under transformation,” they pointed out.

PYMA office-bearer citing the example of the Export Processing Zone (EPZ), said that it is a federal institution, whose employees work in different provinces, and in Sindh province, EPZ will pay Rs20,000 announced by the federation, then how those businesses can pay Rs25,000, who are working from Sindh in other provinces. He urged the Sindh government to implement minimum wage at Rs20,000 on equal basis.

Hanif Lakhany and Farhan Ashrafi demanded that Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah keeping in view the ground realities like the federation and other provinces, the minimum wage in Sindh should be fixed at Rs20,000, so that instead of increasing the production cost of businesses and industries, they can be helped to survive the Corona epidemic.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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