Another ten Chinese provinces hiked their minimum wage rates on July 1. Except for Shenzhen, they all raised their wages by more than 20%, with Hainan raising it by 32
Beijing is raising its level to 960 yuan ($142) a month rom 800 yuan, while Henan is raising its pay to 600 yuan.
That means that 20 provinces have raised wages so far this year, according to China Labor Bulletin.
But will the wage hikes be enough to calm the strikes that have now spread from the South to the North? Possibly, but possibly not. The workers that have gone on strike have insisted on at least 20% raises and most of them want far more. The Auto workers at Denso (Guangzhou Nansha) demanded much more and received a raise of 60%. The Foxconn workers got a 100% raise.
The low level of the minimum wage still does not reflect the increased cost of living, especially on the coast. Even with the increases, a salary of 600 to 800 yuan a month is only going to cover basic necessities, transport, clothing and accommodation. The first problem is that it leaves little money for migrants to send home. The second is that all workers have rapidly raised their expectations, especially given the successes of their colleagues in the past month in winning substantially raises.
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