COST OF LIVING/Labor ministry approves 2023 wage subsidy program
Taipei, Nov. 23 (CNA) Businesses in Taiwan will be able to apply for monthly subsidies of up to NT$920 (US$29.46) per employee under a 2023 financial support scheme approved by the Ministry of Labor (MOL) Wednesday.
From January, businesses whose September and October revenues declined by 10 percent or more compared with the same months in 2021, 2020, or 2019 will be able to apply for subsidies of NT$920 per full-time employee with a basic monthly salary of between NT$26,401-NT$27,600 for a maximum of six months, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said in a statement issued Wednesday.
Meanwhile, businesses will also be eligible to receive a NT$560 monthly subsidy from the MOL for each part-time worker earning less than NT$25,250 a month.
The MOL said that funding for the scheme, which is expected to cost the taxpayer around NT$1.3 billion, would be drawn from the government's Employment Stability Fund.
In addition, owners of small businesses -- defined as those with monthly revenues of less than NT$200,000 -- will not be required to submit proof of a year-over-year decline in sales to apply for the subsidies, according to the MOL.
The Ministry of Economic Affairs, which proposed the scheme to the MOL, said they had streamline the application process in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and a planned minimum wage hike in Taiwan.
Starting Jan. 1, 2023, Taiwan's minimum monthly wage will increase from NT$25,250 to NT$26,400, with the minimum hourly wage rising from NT$168 to NT$176, under an MOL plan approved by the Cabinet in September.
Coming just three days before Taiwan's local government elections, some have criticized the timing of the MOL's decision as an attempt to give the government a boost at the polls.
In response, Labor Minister Hsu Ming-chun (許銘春) said the government had broached the subsidy idea as early as September when the minimum wage hike plan was under review.
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