Colombia will increase its monthly minimum salary for 2017 by 7%. Including a bump in the transportation allowance, the new minimum will be 820,857 pesos per month, or just over $272 USD per month at today’s exchange rate.
The total includes a legal minimum wage of 737,717 pesos plus 83,140 in transportation assistance. The overall increase per month is 53,702 pesos over the 2016 minimum of 767,155 pesos.
The final figure was determined by decree after labor and private sector representatives were unable to reach a mutually agreed-upon sum. Clara López Obregón, Colombia’s minister of labor, praised the two sides for their work during deliberations in recent weeks despite an inability to come to terms and stressed that the efforts will help in the ongoing peace process
The talks began in November and included at least seven rounds of negotiations, according to the Ministry of Labor. “Although we did not obtain the expected result of the commission, we have the satisfaction of the duty fulfilled” she said.
The minister also noted that the increase will not equate to a 7% raise in purchasing power in practical terms due to inflation. “This is an increase in real terms of 1.5% compared to the projection of inflation this year, 5.5%, and probably more than 2.5% compared to the outlook for 2017, which put inflation between 4.0% and 4.5%,” said López.