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The figures indicate that in six provinces and cities the monthly minimum wage standards of A Class areas were above CNY 2,000 by the end of March.

SAFEGUARDS | Labor StandardsNO. 126/20

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The legal minimum wage is the lowest amount which employers may pay employees for work performed within the legal standard working hours, or specific working hours in accordance with their employment contract. According to the new Provisions on Minimum Wage, the minimum wage is one of two types – a monthly minimum wage or an hourly minimum wage. The monthly minimum wage applies to full-time employees, and the hourly minimum wage applies to others, such as part-time and temporary employees.

On April 26, China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security released the Minimum Wage Standards of All Regions in China as of March 31, 2020. The figures indicate that the monthly minimum wage standards of A Class areas in six provinces and cities were above CNY 2,000 by the end of March. They are Shanghai, Beijing, Guangdong, Tianjin, Suzhou, and Zhejiang. Shanghai ranks first with CNY 2,480, followed by Beijing and Shenzhen (Guangdong) with CNY 2,200. Anhui, at CNY 2,480 is bottom of all provinces and cities in China. In addition, hourly minimum wage standards in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin and Guangdong all increased above CNY 20, Beijing still ranks first with CNY 24.

So far this year, the minimum wage standards in Fujian province, Qinghai province and the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region were increased. Both updated standards in the former two were implemented from January 1, 2020, while Guangxi's was put into force on March 1, 2020. As the table below shows, Fujian adjusted the class of areas from five to four, and the monthly minimum wage for these four classes of areas were raised to CNY 1,800, CNY 1,720, CNY 1,570 and CNY 1,420 respectively, the average growth rate and annual average growth rate of which are 6.6% and 2.6%. Meanwhile, their hourly minimum wages for part-time employment were adjusted to CNY 18.5, CNY 18, CNY 16.5 and CNY 15 respectively. In Qinghai, only the monthly minimum wage was raised, to CNY 1,700 with an increase of 13.3%, the hourly minimum wage is still CNY 15.2. The monthly minimum wage in Guangxi was raised by CNY 130 and the hourly standard got an increase too.

Apart from the above adjustment, on July 14, Beijing Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau issued a notice on the suspension of the adjustment of the minimum wage, improving five social insurance treatments. It is not a unique instance, Tianjin announced on March 9 that the adjustment of the minimum wage was suspended due to the complicated situation of the epidemic, meanwhile it made coordinated measures in order to support enterprises on resuming work and production and to stabilize labor relations. It’s not hard to see that the adjustment situation of China’s minimum wage in 2020 trends to be stable, it’s depends on the economic situation and the actual situation of enterprises.

As of March 31, 2020, three provinces and cities have updated their minimum wages. Further information is listed in the following table: (sorted by Class area from highest to lowest):

Provinces/Cities Class Effective Date Monthly (full time)  Hourly (part-time)
Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region A 2020/03/01 2020 (CNY) 2019 (CNY)  Increase rate (%) 2020 (CNY) 2019 (CNY) Rate of increase (%)
1,810 1,680 (2018 data) 7.7% 17.5 16 (2018 data) 9.4%
B 1,580 1,450 (2018 data) 9% 15.3 14 (2018 data) 9.3%
C 1,430 1,300 (2018 data) 10% 14 12.5 (2018 data) 12%
Fujian province A 2020/01/01 1,800 1,700 (2017 data) 5.9% 18.5 18 (2017 data) 2.8%
B 1,720 1,650 (2017 data) 4.2% 18 17.5 (2017 data) 2.9%
C 1,570 1,500 (2017 data) 4.7% 16.5 16 (2017 data) 3.1%
D 1,420 1,380 (2017 data) 2.9% 15 14.6 (2017 data) 2.7%
E - 1,280 (2017 data) - - 13.6 (2017 data) -
Qinghai province A 2020/01/01 1,700 1,500 (2017 data) 13.3% 15.2 15.2 (2017 data) 0

Remarks:

  • The monthly minimum wage and hourly minimum wage standards in Fujian Province were adjusted to four levels.
  • A, B, C, D mean regional level in each province.

Data Source: Human Resources and Social Security department (bureau) websites of provinces and cities listed in the table

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