Date: Thu, 12 Jun 97 22:27:26 CDT
From: rich@pencil (Rich Winkel)
Subject: Japan Unions Win Real Wage Increases
/** 434.0 **/
** Topic: Japan Unions Win Real Wage Increases **
** Written 8:58 PM Jun 11, 1997 by labornews in **
From: Institute for Global Communications <>
Subject: Japan Unions Win Real Wage Increases

Unions win real increases

From ICEM Update, No. 36. 10 June 1997

The following is from the International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers' Unions (ICEM)

Pay rises of between 2.29 and 3.19 percent have been won by Japanese trade unions affiliated to the 20-million-strong International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers' Unions (ICEM). Negotiated in the 1997 "shunto" bargaining round, the increases are valid for one year.

They mean a rise in real earnings, as Japanese annual inflation is predicted to be around 1.6 per cent this year.

The following statistics have been compiled by the ICEM Japanese Affiliates' Federation (ICEM-JAF) for affiliated unions in its sectors.


basic monthly pay (in yen) 309,242; increase in 1997 (in yen) 8,994; percentage increase in 1997: 2.90; percentage increase in 1996: 2.89


basic monthly pay (in yen) 338,342; increase in 1997 (in yen) 11,024; percentage increase in 1997: 3.25; percentage increase in 1996: --

Chemical Fibres:

basic monthly pay (in yen) 290,575; increase in 1997 (in yen) 8,493; percentage increase in 1997: 2.92; percentage increase in 1996: 2.85


basic monthly pay (in yen) 293,381; increase in 1997 (in yen) 6,660; percentage increase in 1997: 2.29; percentage increase in 1996: --


basic monthly pay (in yen) 298,015; increase in 1997 (in yen) 8,509; percentage increase in 1997: 2.86; percentage increase in 1996: 2.88

Electric Power:

basic monthly pay (in yen) 275,533; increase in 1997 (in yen) 7,433; percentage increase in 1997: 2.69; percentage increase in 1996: 2.81


basic monthly pay (in yen) 368,276; increase in 1997 (in yen) 10,705; percentage increase in 1997: 2.75; percentage increase in 1996: 2,68


basic monthly pay (in yen) 275,590; increase in 1997 (in yen) 7,510; percentage increase in 1997: 2.72; percentage increase in 1996: 2.79

Mining (non-metal):

basic monthly pay (in yen) 248,851; increase in 1997 (in yen) 8,208; percentage increase in 1997: 3.19; percentage increase in 1996: 2.93

Structural differences make it difficult to compare Japanese pay rates directly with those in other countries. In most cases, actual pay will be considerably higher than the basic rates shown here.

Throughout Japanese industry, a 40-hour basic working week has been in force since 1 April 1997. This should help to counter unemployment, which rose from 2.2 percent in 1992 to 3.3 percent in 1996.

Japanese unions' organising rate is currently 23.2 percent, the national labour federation Rengo reports - down 0.6 percent since last year. Rengo says the slight drop reflects the difficulty faced by some unions in keeping pace with the restructuring of industries and of work organisation.

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