Ten Years of ElSalario Paint the Picture: Minimum Wages are the Mainstay

By Lorena Ponce de Léon, WageIndicator Latin America manager - Argentina

WageIndicator began in Argentina in 2006 as For almost ten years now  we have continuously accompanied workers, employers, trade unions, journalists and researchers in reporting on the reality of our country, i.e. in a context where official statistics are seriously questionable and do not reflect the real rates of inflation, unemployment and poverty.

‘Still staying on the conservative side, I estimate that unemployment is twice that which is recognized by the INDEC (National Institute of Statistics and Census). In addition, from the 17.5 million employed between 35 and 40%  have casual jobs and there is excessive growth of government employment, which reaches 3.5 million people and is practically the only job growth since 2007’, says Victor Beker, director of the Center for the Study of the New Economy at the University of Belgrano and promoter of ElSalario in Argentina.

Furthermore, given the inflationary environment in our country, where wage increases negotiated in different sectors are between 25% and 35% because it is not known what the real inflation is, to have a reference site with updated salary information such as ElSalario helps to put the salary information in context.

Inflation Beats Salary Increases

For example, take the case of an administrative secretary who, in 2006, under a Collective Agreement earned an average of 1,000 pesos. In 2015 for the same position the income ranges between 9,000 and 10,000 pesos. In nine years therefore it increased nearly 10-fold. But this does not translate into increased purchasing power: the wage increase just reflects the inflation rate, even less so. The fall in real wages due to inflation causes tension in negotiations between the social partners. In this situation it is our Salary Check which most truthfully reflects the real wages in different occupations.

In the course of these nine years also the regularly updated information on Minimum Wage and wages of domestic workers became the most frequently visited and consulted pages of the Argentinian website.

Minimum Wage Pages are the Most Visited

The following table shows the evolution of the Minimum Wage in Argentina from 2006 to 2015, which is a true reflection of inflation rates in this country also:

2006: $ 800

2007: $ 980

2008: $ 1,240

2009: $ 1,400

2010: $ 1,840

2011: $ 2,300

2012: $ 2,670

2013: $ 3,300

2014: $ 4,400

2015: $ 5,588


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