Pay Hike Offers by Small Firms Average 3.35%

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Monthly pay increases offered by small and midsize companies to their labor unions so far in this year’s “shunto” spring wage talks have averaged 3.35%, or ¥8,328, the Japanese Trade Union Confederation, or Rengo, said Wednesday.

The average increase rate for companies with fewer than 300 employees is up sharply from the 2.02% from a year earlier in response to rapid price increases, the umbrella organization of labor unions said.

Still, the size of pay hikes differed much from company to company and region to region, Yasuhisa Hirohama, chairman of the National Conference of the Association of Small Business Entrepreneurs, pointed out.

According to the Japanese Association of Metal, Machinery and Manufacturing Workers pay increases won by member unions, mostly at smaller manufacturers, ranged from nothing to ¥30,000.