Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism Salim Bagus has said the tourism sector’s minimum wage needs to be reviewed to be in line with long working hours employees in the industry endure.
The minister said this on Wednesday in Blantyre when he launched the 2019 National Tourism Month under the theme Tourism and Jobs: A Better Future For All.
“As a ministry, we are still discussing to see how best the issue of minimum wage could be best handled within the tourism sector in the country,” said Bagus.
He said the just-approved National Tourism Policy provides collaboration between ministries of Tourism, Labour and other key stakeholders to set up a minimum wage for the tourism sector.
He hailed government for raising the minimum wage from K25 000 to K35 000 per month, which is contained in the proposed 2019/20 National Budget.
“What government has done is commendable and we are hoping there will be improvement on the minimum wage in months to come,” said Bagus, warning that government will not tolerate the tendency of employing foreigners for cheap labour in the country’s tourism sector.
Bagus said the launch of the tourism month is aimed at raising awareness on the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value.
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), in 2018 travel and tourism in Malawi generated 236 500 direct jobs, which is 2.9 percent of the total employment.
The day is commemorated on September 27.