Thursday, December 20, 2018

OVERTIME - only allowed for reasons provided in law, not simply on employer or worker wishes?

OVERTIME and working on REST DAYS - well, this can happen only in limited situations. An employer cannot simply ask workers to do overtime every day or every week or every month...

Malaysia has draconian limit of for overtime - 104 hours per month - that does not mean that the employer can ask workers to work every month an additional 104 hours...or to work on rest day..

Paying 'minimum wages' makes it difficult for many workers to have enough to sustain their and their families livelihood...and, as such, many workers are DESPERATE and are willing(or want) overtime to earn more...Wonder whether this is why Malaysia keeps minimum wages low. 

Remember that the government merely sets the MINIMUM WAGE - but employers must be just to their workers, and ensure that their workers are paid a JUST WAGE - which should be higher than the national minimum wage. It is is disappointing to see some companies making millions of profit...but a lot of their workers earn minimum or low wages. Without workers, there can be no profits. Workers are not 'commodities' which one strives to get at the lowest cost - but are human partners in the business of the employer, so wages should be just..

Recently, the allegation concerning Top Glove came of which was the making of workers work long(or excessive) overtime, sadly the Minister came out saying that the overtime done did not exceed the maximum limit of 104 hours a month....BUT the real question would be, whether this was LEGALLY PERMISSIBLE overtime ...under which reason provided under Section 60A(2) Employment Act 1955

Section 60A(2)

(2) An employee may be required by his employer to exceed the limit of hours prescribed in subsection (1) and to work on a rest day, in the case of-
(a) accident, actual or threatened, in or with respect to his place of work;
(b) work, the performance of which is essential to the life of the community;
(c) work essential for the defence or security of Malaysia;
(d) urgent work to be done to machinery or plant;
(e) an interruption of work which it was impossible to foresee; or
(f) work to be performed by employees in any industrial undertaking essential to the economy of Malaysia or any essential service as defined in the Industrial Relations Act 1967:
Provided that the Director General shall have the power to enquire into and decide whether or not the employer is justified in calling upon the employee to work in the circumstances specified in paragraphs (a) to (f)....
 First Schedule of Industrial Relations Act defines "Essential Services"

[Sch. Title Am. Act A1322:s.33]
1. Banking services.
2. Electricity services.
3. Fire services.
4. Port, dock, harbour and airport services and undertakings, including stevedoring, lighterage, cargo handling, pilotage and storing or bulking of commodities.
5. Postal services.
6. Prison services.
7. Production, refining, storage, supply and distribution of fuel and lubricants.
8. Public health services.
8A. Public waste management services.
9. Radio, communication services, including broadcasting and television services.
10. Telegraph, telephone and telecommunication services.
11. Transport services by land, water or air.
12. Water services.
13. Any service provided by any of the following Departments of Government-
(i) Chemistry.
(ii) Civil Aviation.
(iii) Customs and Excise.
(iv) Immigration.
(v) Marine.
(vi) Meteorology.
(vii) Printing.
14. Services which are connected with, or related to or which assist towards, the maintenance and functioning of the armed forces and the Royal Malaysian Police Force.
15. Businesses and industries which are connected with the defence and security of Malaysia.
16. Any section of any service, on the working of which the safety of the employees therein or of the establishment relating thereto depends.
17. Industries declared by the Minister by notification in the Gazette as industries essential to the economy of Malaysia.

Workers, Malaysian and migrant workers, should only be working 8 hours per day...and certainly not more than 48 hours a week. 

In exceptional situations, as stated in Section 60A(2), they can be asked to work overtime, on rest days ...  

In the Top Glove case, I wonder what is the minimum basic salary of its workers...noting that this company is doing very well..

The Top Glove workers – eight from Nepal and eight from Bangladesh – alleged that their factory was “mental torture” where they had to work seven days a week, at least 12 hours a day, with only one day off a month....Payslips seen by the Guardian seemed to indicate workers often worked between 120 and 160 hours’ overtime a month, exceeding the 104 hours allowed by Malaysian law.At Top Glove, the payslips appear to show the basic salary was 4.8 ringgit (90p) per hour, with basic monthly pay of 1,000 ringgit, less than half the national median wage of 2,160 ringgit.- The Guardian, 9/12/2018
Now, if the wages being paid is Minimum Wage, many a Malaysian worker will not even be attracted... 

If the workers are expected to regularly work on rest day and do overtime, again Malaysian workers may not be attracted...

Well, Top Glove's revenue is about RM1 billion - and would have expected that its workers were all earning high wages and enjoying a comfortable life ...It is not simply that companies be concerned with paying out higher dividends to its shareholders but must also be just to its workers..

The allegations against Top Glove may be baseless - let the Ministry investigate independently, and tell us all. 

Protecting Malaysian companies is something that Malaysia should do...but at the same time it is important to ensure that these companies also excel in human rights and their treatment of their workers.

Did not hear anything from the Trade Union representing the Top Glove workers...Is there no Trade Union? 

What about the work in Top Glove? Are the Malaysian workers enjoying regular employment - until retirement? Or are they only having PRECARIOUS forms of employment short 1-year or less employment contracts? Is TOP GLOVE using the 'contractor for labour' system to get their workers?

Many of us are not so bothered about Migrant (foreign) workers - but let's not forget they are human beings too..

See related posts:- 

Minister to say 'fake news' or 'actions of rivals' when HR Defenders highlight possible rights violations in Top Glove is wrong?

Malaysians work 40 hours a week and earn a decent income for a good life? Malaysia's Top Glove investigated by Britain?


Top Glove posts record revenue, declares dividend

PETALING JAYA: Top Glove Corp Bhd , which saw its net profit rising 7.51% to RM101.59mil in the fourth quarter ended Aug 31, has declared a final dividend of 10 sen per share.

The glove maker said the latest dividend would bring the total financial year ended Aug 31, 2018 (FY18) dividend payout to 17 sen per share, an increase of 2.5 sen or 17% over FY17, representing a net profit payout ratio of 50%. It added that the dividend would be subject to shareholders’ approval at the upcoming AGM in January.

In the fourth quarter, Top Glove’s revenue rose 34.8% to RM1.21bil – its highest ever revenue attained within a single quarter, compared with RM902.41mil in the same quarter last year. 

For FY18, Top Glove clocked a record-breaking revenue of RM4.21bil, surpassing the RM4bil threshold and representing a 23.6% growth from FY17. Its profit before tax was also at an all-time high of RM522.7mil, an exceptional increase of 36.4% compared with FY17, while the sales volume (quantity sold) reached its peak, surging 26% year-on-year.

The group attributed its financial performance to its continuous pursuit of internal improvements. In particular, the application of advanced technology enabled quality and efficiency to be improved considerably, whilst also contributing to a reduction in manpower requirements.

Additionally, the strong demand growth also accounted for the higher sales revenue, with the resulting higher utilisation rate also leading to a better profit before tax as well as Ebitda and margins for FY18.

Raw material prices for FY18 were mixed. Natural rubber latex prices averaged at RM4.51 per kg, down 21.7% from FY17, while the average nitrile latex price was US$1.13 per kg, up 2.7% compared with the previous financial year.

“We are very pleased to have achieved another historical high with our best full-year performance yet, especially given the challenging operating environment. Our record results underline the effectiveness of our ongoing technology-driven improvement initiatives, which focus on quality and cost-efficiency.

“We also credit our robust results to our high-performing team who are committed to delivering excellence in all they do,” executive chairman Tan Sri Lim Wee Chai said in a statement.

The group said it would continue to pursue strategic expansion to ensure it is well-positioned to meet the robust global demand for gloves.

“In progress is the expansion of several existing facilities: F32 (phases one and two to be completed early and end-2019, respectively), F33 (to be completed early 2019) and F5A (to be completed at end-2019).

Meanwhile, its newest factory F8A in Thailand is scheduled to be operational in early 2020,” Top Glove said.

The expansion would boost the group’s total number of production lines by an additional 98 lines and production capacity by 9.8 billion gloves per annum.

It has also proposed to undertake a bonus issue of 1.28 billion new ordinary shares in Top Glove on the basis of one bonus share for every existing share held on the entitlement date, which was approved at the EGM held on Wednesday. - Star, 12/10/2018

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