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Title: The minimum wage policy in Hong Kong
Authors: Tang, BS
Ko, S
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Source: Asia Pacific journal of public administration, 2010, v. 32, no. 2, p. 163-176 How to cite?
Journal: Asia Pacific journal of public administration 
Abstract: An across-the-board statutory minimum wage (SMW) will come into effect in Hong Kong on 1 May 2011. We draw on theoretical arguments for and against a SMW policy, examining empirical evidence outside Hong Kong to suggest an agenda for research. The anti-poverty argument for a SMW implies that the SMW rate should significantly exceed the comprehensive social security assistance (CSSA) monthly payment rate of HK$4095. However, the anti-poverty argument is problematic because of the complexity of the poverty problem. The unemployment argument against a SMW has a lower level of consensus today than it did three decades ago because of conflicting empirical results. The theory of a monopsonistic labour market is the leading theoretical explanation for this situation. It is an empirical question if the labour market that hires low-wage workers in Hong Kong is monopsonistic or competitive. The source of monopsony power and the effects of an across-the-board SMW can differ among industries depending on the difference between the industry average wage rates and the SMW. Firms that hire low-wage workers can also adjust differently, depending on their competitiveness in their product markets. Empirical investigations can help improve policy making with informed decision making.
ISSN: 2327-6665
EISSN: 2327-6673
DOI: 10.1080/23276665.2010.10779372
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