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Minimum Wage Ordinance, Chapter 608

The Minimum Wage Ordinance establishes a Statutory Minimum Wage (SMW) regime aimed at striking an appropriate balance between forestalling excessively low wages and minimising the loss of low-paid jobs while sustaining Hong Kong’s economic growth and competitiveness.

SMW provides a wage floor to protect grassroots employees.

Statutory Minimum Wage (SMW) has come into force since 1 May 2011. The current SMW rate is $37.5 per hour effective from 1 May 2019.

The Chief Executive in Council has adopted the recommendation of the Minimum Wage Commission to raise the SMW rate to $40 per hour. Subject to approval by the Legislative Council, the revised SMW rate will take effect from 1 May 2023.

SMW is expressed as an hourly rate. In essence, wages payable to an employee in respect of any wage period should be no less than the SMW rate on average for the total number of hours worked.

The major provisions of the Minimum Wage Ordinance - e.g. definition of wages - are aligned as closely as possible with those of the Employment Ordinance to ensure consistency and effective enforcement, avoid confusion to employers and employees and minimise the compliance cost for employers.

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