Colombia to hike minimum wage by 12% in 2024 By Reuters

BOGOTA(Reuters) – Colombia’s minimum wage will increase by 12% in 2024, Labor Minister Gloria Ines Ramirez said on Friday, taking the figure to 1.3 million pesos ($340) per month.

The increase in the minimum wage represents a hike of 140,000 pesos ($36.63) per month.

The wage increase comes as the country battles persistently high inflation and an ailing economy. Twelve-month inflation to the end of November hit 10.15%.

The increase for 2024 is less than the rise in the minimum wage in 2023, when the government reached an agreement to boost it by 16%.

The increase for 2024 was not agreed with business leaders, despite meetings between the government and industry groups, Ramirez told journalists.

“There were discussions and movements by the parties, but they were not enough to reach an agreement,” Ramirez said, adding that 10 meetings took place in search of an agreement.

The lack of agreement, however, has no impact on implementing the new minimum, which is set by the government.

Business associations and workers’ unions had managed to reach an agreement with the government on minimum wage increases for 2022 and 2023.

The hike to the minimum wage comes as Colombia’s economy stalls.

The central bank’s technical team had hiked its 2023 growth outlook to 1.2% at the end of October, but the economy shrank 0.3% in the third quarter versus the year-earlier period, prompting bank chief Leonardo Villar to warn that the forecast was unlikely to be met.

($1 = 3,822.05 Colombian pesos)

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