Construction sector minimum wage deal struck

The Construction Industries Federation (CIF) and the Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (Manwu) have agreed on a new minimum wage for workers in the construction sector.

The minimum wage increase will only apply to categories of workers listed in the collective agreement. 

“We believe this increase will make a difference in the working and living conditions of construction workers. And we appeal to all contractors countrywide to comply with the minimum wages and employment conditions. We will continue to strengthen enforcement to ensure that all contractors, especially foreigners and tenderpreneurs, adhere to the minimum wages,” said Justina Jonas, the secretary-general of Manwu.

The workers will receive a 5% increase on the previous minimum wage payable in the first year and an additional 4% increment on the minimum wage payable the previous year for the second year.

“That would mean that in the first year, the minimum wage payable for an unskilled labourer will be N$18.72 and in the second year N$19.46. All other conditions of employment mostly remain the same as in the previously gazetted collective agreement,” said Jonas.

The new agreement would ensure that every contractor pays at least the minimum wages payable, creating a level playing field for all stakeholders. The agreement extends to every contractor in the sector regardless of whether the contractor is a member of the CIF.

According to CIF chief executive officer Bärbel Kirchner, negotiations took place under very trying circumstances, as growth in the construction sector remains elusive, as many local contractors are competing with foreign contractors, and are striving to sustain their businesses, which has led to retrenchments, Kirchner added.

“I am truly happy that we reached an agreement amicably, as this was not a given. Indeed, we engage our members four times to ensure that our collective bargaining takes place within the confines of our mandate,” he said.

The new collective agreement will come into effect after it has been gazetted. The signed collective agreement has been submitted to Namibia’s Minister of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Creation, Utoni Nujoma.

The previously negotiated and gazetted collective agreement remains in force until 1 November 2023.




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Last modified on Thursday, 19 October 2023 16:54

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