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June 24, 2017

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Foreign caregivers' salaries to be raised: MOL

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Ministry of Labor (MOL) recently decided to raise the salaries of foreign in-home caregivers from NT$15,480 to NT$19,273, in line with the nation's newly adjusted minimum wage.

This will be the first wage increase for foreign in-home caregivers in 17 years. Employers, however, will be given the choice of deducting NT$2,500 in food and accommodation fees, which means that caregivers will be receiving NT$933 more as opposed to NT$3,433.

Furthermore, the government is also asking that caregivers be given at least eight hours of continuous rest every day.

The ministry will be negotiating with Taiwan's sources of foreign labor, aiming to launch the new measures by year-end.

The Workforce Development Agency (WDA, 勞動力發展署), however, is currently considering not making the revisions retroactive, limiting the increase in wages for newly hired caregivers. Given that there are approximately 210,000 in-home caregivers from abroad currently working in Taiwan, the agency's move is expected to generate controversy. The WDA explained, however, that it will encourage employers to draw up new contracts with foreign workers; if the contracts are renewed, then the new regulations will apply to the signatories.

The agency said that it is still in the process of coming up with a plan that works in the benefit of both caregivers that are currently employed and would-be caregivers.

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