The government has revised the base year for wage rate index (WRI) to 2016 which will replace the old series with base of 1963-65. The revised base will be more representative and will play a critical role in determining the minimum wages and national floor wages along with other parameters.
“The new series on WRI has been compiled on half-year basis as against the annual in the existing series. The new WRI series would be point-to-point, half-yearly, with reference date as January 1 and July 1 of every year,” labour minister Bhupender Yadav said.
The New WRI basket (2016=100) has enhanced the scope and coverage in terms of occupations and industries as compared to old WRI series (1963-65=100). Of the 37 industries covered in the new series, 16 new Industries including textile garments, footwear and petroleum have been added to the new basket, said DPS Negi, principal advisor, ministry of labour and employment.
Manufacturing, mining and plantation sectors have weights (estimated total wage bill) of 82.57%, 11.23% and 6.20% respectively in the new WRI series as compared to weights (estimated employment) of 48.78%, 17.01% and 34.21% in the old series. 12.
The top five industries — motor vehicles (11.49%), coal mines (9.53%), textile garments (9.32%), Iron & steel (9.30%) and cotton textiles (6.55%) together accounted for 46% of the total weight.
The field work for collection of current wage data was conducted during January 2021 to June 2021. The overall WRI for all the 37 industries combined together stood at 119.7 in 2020.
The new series presents wage rate indices, average daily absolute wage rates and real wages at 2001 prices by occupation, industry and all-India level from July 2O16 to July 2020.
The overall average daily absolute wage rate for all the 37 industries combined together stood at `585.5 in the second half of 2020 as compared to `576.1 in the first half of the year.