South Africa: Minimum farm wage raised to R105 a day

The new minimum wage for South African farmworkers is R105 a day, labour minister Mildred Oliphant announced on Monday.

Oliphant said the new salary - R36 more than the current minimum wage of R69 a day – would come into effect on March 1 and would rise by inflation plus 1.5 percent in subsequent years.

It is a response to a wave of violent strikes that hit the industry over the last three months.

"The new minimum wage... is R105 per day for employees who work nine hours a day, or R11.66 per hour, R525 weekly, or R2274.82 per month," Oliphant told reporters in Pretoria.

Farms however say they cannot afford to pay their workers more than the current R69 a day because of the cost of fuel and electricity.

They believe higher wages may put jobs at risk.

The wage review follows numerous clashes between police and striking farm workers in fruit-growing regions of the Western Cape province in December and January.

The protesters had demanded their daily pay more than double to R150.

Image: Getty

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