The Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board Region 2 initiated a series of public consultations this April, directed at gaining the views of employers and employees in the region concerning minimum wages.

The consultations kicked off with a virtual event held for stakeholders in Batanes on April 6, 2022. This was followed by face-to-face proceedings in Tuguegarao City on April 8 and in Cauayan City and Ilagan City on April 20. Further consultations will be held in Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Santiago City, on April 26, 27 and 28, respectively. A public hearing on May 5 will round up the consultations.

The Board and its partner agencies prepared situationers as reference during the small group discussion of the participants. The prevailing minimum wage rates, price trends of basic necessities, prime commodities and agricultural products, and regional economic indicators were presented to the audience composed of employers, employees and union leaders from different sectors.

The discussions elicited mixed sentiments on the adjustment of current minimum wage. Concerns on the increase in cost of living and production costs, as well as the effect of the pandemic on businesses were raised. These concerns will be considered by the Board in deliberating minimum wage rates.

Department of Labor and Employment Regional Director Joel M. Gonzales chair the Board. National Economic and Development Authority Regional Director Dionisio C. Ledres and Department of Trade and Industry Regional Director Romleah Juliet P. Ocampo sit as vice-chairs. Mr. Jesus B. Villamor and Mr. Johnny M. Alvaro, representing employees, and Ms. Arcelli L. Dulin, representing employers, complete the Board. #