Oliver Kazunga, Senior Business Reporter
WORKERS in the mining industry have been awarded a 327,5 percent wage increase with effect from July 1, taking the salary for the lowest paid worker to $14 750 per month.
Prior to the salary adjustment, the lowest paid employee was earning $3 450 since the last salary review in February this year.
The latest pay rise follows an agreement reached between the Associated Mine Workers Union of Zimbabwe (AMWUZ) and the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe.
According to a document dated July 28, 2020 signed between the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe and AMWUZ president, Mr Tinago Ruzive, prior to his death at the weekend, the new salary structure covers the period July to September 2020.
“The portion paid in US dollar shall be converted to ZWL$ at the prevailing interbank exchange rate at the time of payment and deducted from the respective minimum wage to determine the balance to be paid in ZWL$.
“For clarity, the total earnings for each grade will be equal to the respective minimum for that grade.
“Non foreign currency generating companies are excluded from the requirement to pay in US$,” reads the document.
Mine workers, just as is the case with workers in all other sectors of the economy, have been pushing for inflation-related pay adjustment in line with Zimbabwe dollar inflation figures.
On the other hand, most employers have resorted to paying non contract binding cost of living allowances citing their inability to match inflation increase.
Market watchers contend that there is a need for the mining sector to keep workers’ morale high if it is to meet its 2023 milestone of growing annual exports to at least US$12 billion.
With the sector’s produce largely going into the exports market, the mining sector has the capacity to retain salary value as it earns the US dollar. — @okazunga