Would NWC bark up the same old tree?
The high power NWC is again tasked to review the wages of workers, this time when the economy is in a tail spin. In good times, it is in a happier position to quarrel about how much increases to give to the workers. In bad times, it is going to decide how much to cut or not to give to the workers. Hard times mean tough times for the workers, the convenient whipping boy. The workers is always at the fore front when cost cutting is needed. They either lose their jobs, got their salaries cut, or lose their increments. This is the standard recipe with its standard recommendations. Didn't we know that labour cost is only one small part of the whole equation of operating cost? Would the NWC do a bit more and look into areas like land cost, rental cost, govt service cost and other cost before slicing through the workers pay packet for once? And don't forget about top management cost. Any further cuts or lowering of increments are going to hit the workers real hard. All the other costs are going up and we are expecting the workers to bite the bullet and tighten their belts further. Are we demanding too much from the workers? This single perspective approach to tackling the operating cost problem has to be addressed differently. The cost of other services and goods must be brought down if the workers are to survive this crisis with further restraints on their wages. 80% of the workforce will fall into this trap of rising cost of living and lower income. We need a more enlighten NWC to do something differently instead of just going through the motion like yesteryears.