Garment Industry TUs call for 70% wage hike similar to Tea Industry! 



In a dramatic turn of events, the garment industry in Sri Lanka is on the verge of a major upheaval.

Trade unions representing garment workers are set to meet on June 26th, aiming to orchestrate island-wide strikes to demand a substantial 70% wage increase.

This move comes in the wake of a controversial decision by the government to significantly raise wages for tea and rubber workers, igniting widespread dissatisfaction and unrest among garment workers who currently earn a paltry 24,000 LKR per month.

The recent wage hike for tea and rubber workers, raising their daily earnings to 1,700 LKR, has spotlighted the glaring wage disparities across different industries managed by the Wages Board.

Historically one of the highest-paid sectors, the tea and rubber industries have now further widened the gap, leaving garment workers feeling increasingly marginalized and underpaid.

Garment industry workers, who play a crucial role in Sri Lanka’s export economy, are now rallying together, their voices growing louder against what they perceive as an unjust disparity. They argue that if tea estate workers, who often do not complete a full 8-hour work schedule, can receive a 70% wage increase, then they, who contribute significantly more hours, definitely deserve equal compensation.

The trade unions have been quick to mobilize, with preliminary meetings already setting the stage for a potential showdown. The upcoming meeting on June 26th is expected to be a decisive moment, potentially sparking a wave of strikes that could cripple production across the island.

Critics of the government’s decision to raise wages for tea and rubber workers argue that while well-intentioned, it was an impractical move that failed to account for the broader economic implications and was curated by President Ranil Wickremesinghe merely targeting the promise of the estate block vote by the current Minister Jeevan Thondaman.

Now, as the garment industry gears up for action, the potential for economic disruption looms large. The garment sector is a cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s economy, and prolonged strikes could have severe repercussions, both domestically and on the global stage.

As tension mounts, the government’s response will be crucial in determining the outcome of this brewing crisis.

This sets an adverse precedent for the Sri Lankan Economy and paves the way for many more industries coming forward due to this unwanted politically motivated salary gap created with the 70% tea industry salary hike.


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