Despite Pandemic, the Philippines Is Among the Countries Where Wages Increased

But it also has one of the worst inflation.
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The Philippines is one of the countries where the pandemic didn’t stop the increase of wages, according to research and analytics company Picodi. The minimum wage increased by 3.4 percent from P7,139 in 2020 to P7,385 in 2021. 

The Philippines is 28th place among 56 countries included in the study. In New Zealand, the minimum wage increased by 8.1 percent (12th place) year to year, in South Korea by 1.3 percent (36th place), and in Taiwan by 0.8 percent (40th place).

It’s the second year in a row for Kazakhstan to place last in the ranking. Nominal pay in this country did not change, but increasing the health insurance contribution means that employees will take home less money.

Food prices went up.

Although Filipinos’ pockets are slightly more filled this year, much of that money is spent on the rising cost of food. According to Picodi, a shopping basket would cost the minimum wage earner P4,788—more than half of the minimum wage. That consists of bread, milk, eggs, rice, cheese, meat, fruits, and vegetables. “Even though this list is short, these products meet the nutritional needs of an adult,” wrote Picodi in its report

  • Milk (10 liters) – P864
  • Bread (10 loaves, 500 g each) – P577
  • Rice (1.5 kg) – P76
  • Eggs (20 pieces) – P147
  • Cheese (1 kg) – P296
  • Poultry and beef (6 kg) – P1,507
  • Fruits (6 kg) – P651
  • Vegetables (8 kg) – P670

The total price of basic food products amounts to P4,788, which is 7.7 percent more than in the previous year.

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Mario Alvaro Limos
Features Editor-at-Large
Mario Alvaro Limos is features editor-at-large at Esquire Philippines, and heads the Lifestyle and Esports content of as its section editor. Email him at [email protected] and [email protected]
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