Minimum wage in Turkey decreases in value due to raising inflation

As 10-month inflation rate increased by 22,5 percent in Turkey, the minimum wage of 1,603 [$303,41] Turkish lira has a melt value of 360,6 [$68,33] Turkish lira due to high inflation
Thursday, 29 November 2018 01:37

The data given by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) indicates that a person with minimum wage in Turkey could afford to buy 40 kilograms of beef per month in January 2018. Yet, in October, the price of beef has increased to 45,3 Turkish lira [$8,58], and the amount of beef that can be bought by a minimum wage worker decreased to 35,3 kilograms with a loss of approximately 5 kilograms.

Considering that the inflationary expectation of the Central Bank of Turkey for 2019 is 15,2 percent, and the Turkish government’s expectation is 15,9 percent according to ‘the New Economic Program’ announced in September 2018, the minimum wage increase by 2019 will be of vital importance for workers. Workers expect for a wage increase to reimburse their losses and to meet the inflation rates of next year.

In October, the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions (TÜRK-İŞ) had suggested that the net minimum wage should be 2,000 Turkish lira [$378,93] by 2019, and the government should not levy taxes from people with minimum wage.

Stating that there is a heavy tax burden on wage workers, TÜRK-İŞ pointed out that about 2/3 of the tax levied on income is paid by the wage workers.


According to a research carried out by TÜRK-İŞ on poverty threshold and starvation line in Turkey, ‘the starvation line’, which is the amount of food expenditure for a family of four to be able to have a healthy, balanced and adequate nutrition, is 1,943 Turkish lira [$368,13] in November 2018 with.

‘The poverty threshold’, which is an aggregate amount of expenditures for food, clothing, housing, transportation, education, health and other necessities, is 6,328 Turkish lira [$1,198,93], according to the research.       

The rise in inflation in kitchen during the 12-month period reached 24,28 Turkish lira [$4,60], according to the data given by TÜRK-İŞ. In November 2018, there is no significant price increase in milk, yoghurt, cheese, legumes, meat cubes and minced meat, while the price of an egg increased to 0,79 Turkish lira [$0,15]. The prices of potato and onion also increased compared to the previous month.