National minimum wage 2022 open for comment

Deadline for public input on minimum wage amount set for 1 October.

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) Commission has called for written submissions on changes to the national minimum wage for 2022. This is in preparation for the Commission’s annual report and recommendations on the annual review of the national minimum wage later in the year.

The call for public comment is in line with the NMW Act of 2018, which requires the NMW Commission to annually review rates and make recommendations to the Employment and Labour minister.

The national minimum wage is the amount payable for the ordinary hours of work and does not include payment of allowances, such as transport, tools, food or accommodation, payments in kind such as boarding or lodging, tips, bonuses or gifts.

In February, Minister Thulas Nxesi announced that the national minimum wage for each ordinary hour worked had increased from R20.76 to R21.69 for the year 2021, effective 1 March 2021.

In terms of the NMW Act, the policy instrument is a floor level below which no employee should be paid.

It is illegal and an unfair labour practice for an employer to unilaterally alter hours of work or other conditions of employment in implementing the national minimum wage.

In considering the annual adjustment, the commission will take the following into account, among others:

  • Inflation
  • Cost of living
  • Gross domestic product
  • Wage levels and collective bargaining outcomes
  • Productivity
  • Ability of employers to carry on their businesses successfully
  • The operation of small, medium or micro-enterprises and new enterprises
  • Likely impact of the recommendation adjustment on employment or the creation of employment.

The deadline for comments and representations is 1 October 2021.