BANGKOK – Japanese firms operating in Thailand are planning to offer an average 4.0 percent wage hike this year, down 0.2 percentage point from the previous year’s actual rate, an annual NNA survey showed.
Of 477 respondents, 381, or 79.9 percent, said they plan to raise salaries. Planned bonuses averaged 2.9 months’ worth of salary, according to the survey conducted from August to September.
Planned pay increases averaged 3.1 percent in the logistics sector, down 0.5 point from the previous year’s actual rate, while the figure stood at 3.9 percent for the automotive industry, down 0.4 point.
The highest pay rise plan was reported in the financial sector at 4.7 percent, up 0.1 of a point, followed by 4.3 percent each in the food, trade, service, and wholesale and retail sectors, representing a 0.4 point increase in the wholesale and retail sector and a 0.2 to 0.4 point decline in the other three sectors.
More than half of the responding firms said they plan to implement wage hikes either in April or January, with the size of increases depending on factors such as employee performance, attendance and the rate of inflation.
In terms of labor costs, 88.9 percent of the respondents felt labor costs were rising, with 57.2 percent saying current costs had already reached their limits and 28.9 percent stating they could still tolerate a 20 percent increase.
In response to a multiple-answer question on addressing rising labor costs, 351 firms said they plan to deal with the issue by streamlining. Some 315 said they would do that by boosting sales, 131 by cutting Japanese workers and 130 by automation.
With regard to a multiple-answer question on labor-management issues, 377 firms cited securing competent personnel as their prime concern, the same as in the previous year, while 246 firms said pay increases and 181 stated excessive labor market liquidity.