MANILA — The Executive Director of the National Wages and Productivity Board (NWPB) has expressed the viewpoint that raising the minimum wage does not offer a solution to combat high inflation.

During the House Appropriations Committee session for the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) 2024 budget briefing, Maria Criselda Sy, the Executive Director of NWPB, made an appearance on Thursday.

“In recent months, the underlying cause of inflation has been traced back to supply-side factors. Consequently, our focus should be directed towards resolving these supply-side challenges,” she remarked.

Sy underscored that an immediate increase in the minimum wage could potentially result in “unintended repercussions” for the economy.

In June, the NCR Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board sanctioned a P40 hike in the minimum wage for the National Capital Region.

For non-agricultural workers, this equates to a rise in daily pay from P570 to P610.

This wage hike was met with resistance from business groups, who raised concerns about its feasibility for numerous small businesses and its potential contribution to escalated prices.

Conversely, labor groups criticized the wage increase as falling “short of sufficiency” in light of the escalating costs of essential goods and services. (ai/mnm)