Gamuda to increase minimum wages for foreign workers, entry pay for graduates
23 Mar 2022 | The Star

Petaling Jaya: The minimum wage from RM1,200 to RM1,600 for foreign workers will be increased from May 1 of this year, as well as the entry-level pay for graduates, says construction company Gamuda Bhd.

It said in a statement on Wednesday (March 23) that “In line with our commitment to make changes for the better and to mitigate against worsening social inequity, Gamuda has decided that it is timely to revise our internal minimum wage policy for our workforce across the group,” it said.

“Our group’s long-standing policy has been to provide accommodation to our foreign workers at purpose-built centralised labour quarters (CLQs) at no cost to them,” added Gamuda.

It also said that its CLQs have standard design specifications to ensure that the company’s workforce is housed comfortably and safely, adding that foreign workers employed by Gamuda have access to amenities.

Gamuda said that these amenities include communal kitchens, laundry, sundry shops and medical facilities as well as recreational facilities like futsal courts where space permits.

“We are convinced through our experience over the years that providing comfortable accommodation and a conducive living environment for our workers translates to improved morale and productivity at the workplace,” said Gamuda.

It added that the group has ensured that their own directly hired workers are not exposed to long-term bondage as the group covers their agent or middlemen fees.

“We will work with our extended supply chain and sub-contractors over the next two years to align them with our requirements,” said Gamuda.

“This bondage risk has to be curbed and managed moving forward given that such middlemen fees have been an avenue for exploitation of highly vulnerable foreign workers, in our industry and at large,” it added.

Gamuda also said that the group will also be increasing the entry level pay for fresh graduates joining the company from RM3,300 to RM3,500 for engineers and from RM3,000 to RM3,200 for non-engineering graduates.

“We have reviewed these levels to ensure that our entry level offers are competitive and within the top quartile of our industry to enable our group to continuously attract and develop the necessary talent for our business growth,” it said.

“The minimum wage and graduate entry level pay increases raises the floor for the group’s baseline pay and consequently our workforce in the immediate pay bands above this (up to RM5,000) will also enjoy a cascaded pay increase to adjust for internal equity,” added Gamuda.

On March 19, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that the government has increased the minimum wage to RM1,500 per month and it will be implemented nationwide for certain companies effective May 1.

The prime minister said the new minimum wage would initially apply to big companies, and government-linked companies.

The minimum wage was last revised on Feb 1, 2020, when it was increased by RM100 from RM1,100 to RM1, 200 during the tabling of Budget 2020.