Ecuador’s banana sector moves closer to living wage

Thu 13/07/2023 by Richard Wilkinson

The Ecuadorian banana sector is taking a step forward towards formalising compliance with national living wage policy by requesting the Ecuadorian Ministry of Labour an “official living wage compliance certificate”.

In Ecuador, it is a legal and constitutional requirement for employers to adhere to the “salario digno” policy, which mandates the payment of a living wage to their workers for a standard 40- hour workweek. This policy is aimed at ensuring that the workers in the banana sector receive fair and dignified compensation for their labour, and it is a crucial step towards promoting decent work and improving the standard of living for workers. In 2022, the living wage was set at US$475/month in Ecuador by the Global Living Wage Coalition and Anker Living Wage Income Research Institute, while the total salary of a worker according to our legislation with all social benefits in 2022 was established as follows:

Employees with more than one year of work: USD 531.26

  • Base salary: USD 425/month;
  • Fourteenth remuneration (monetary benefit established by law): US$35.42/month;
  • Thirteenth remuneration (monetary benefit established by law): US$35.42/month;
  • Reserve funds (a monetary benefit established by law): US$35.42/month.

The  worker’s income could increase according to voluntary benefits and other permanent mandatory variables offered by companies such as:

  • Bonuses for performance or quality;
  • The value corresponding to the participation in profits by the worker of 15%;
  • Benefits in-kind that represent lower expenses for workers such as food services, transportation and others.

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