EconomyFact Check

Social media users quote inaccurate minimum wage figures for France, UK, and Germany

Claim: Social media users are quoting minimum wage figures for France, the UK, and Germany to make a case that Ghana’s increased wage is insufficient.

Whilst it is true that Ghana’s minimum wage, when compared to France, the UK, and Germany is very low, the figures being quoted for the European countries are inaccurate.

Full Text

On Wednesday, November 16, 2022, Ghana’s Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, announced a 10 per cent increment in the National Daily Minimum Wage.

The figure, which stood at GHC 13.53, was set to be increased to GHC 14.88 with effect from January 1, 2023.

Following the announcement, Ghanaians took to various social media platforms to react to the development. Essentially, they were comparing the new minimum wage to that in other countries such as France, Germany, and the UK.

A tweet by Berla Mundi, a popular Ghanaian media personality, was found among several others making such comparisons here, here, and here

The claimants asserted that whereas Ghana’s minimum wage was GHC 14.88 ($1.06), the minimum Wages in France, the UK, and Germany were $10.71 per hour, $11.43 per hour, and $ 10.59 per hour, respectively.

A collage showing several online users who have made the claim.

It will not be surprising if the minimum Wages in France, the UK, and Germany are higher than that of Ghana, considering the strength of their respective economies. However, how accurate are the figures quoted by the claimants?

Verification 

In July this year, the government of France announced an increment in its minimum wage. A publication originally in French said, “the gross hourly minimum wage will drop [sic] from 10.85 to 11.06 euros.” This increment took effect on August 1, 2022.

When we converted 11.06 euros to US Dollars, the figure became $11.44. Using a rate of 1.03 – this is above the $10.71 quoted by the claimants. 

Currently, the minimum wage for people who are 23 years and above in the UK is 9.50 pounds. When the conversion to US Dollars is done, the figure becomes $11.32, using a rate of 1.19. The UK’s $11.32 minimum wage per hour is lower than the $11.43 quoted by the claimants.

With regard to the minimum wage in Germany, DUBAWA Ghana found that it has been pegged at 9.82 euros per hour since January 1, 2022. When the Euro-to-US Dollar conversion is done, the figure will be $10.16, using a rate of 1.03.  Whereas we found Germany’s minimum wage per hour to be $10.16, the claimants quoted $10.59.

CountryClaimed rateOfficial rate (in original currency)Rate when converted to US DollarsRate when converted to GHC
France$10.7111.06 Euros$11.44 (at a rate of 1.03)165.91 (at a rate of 15.00)
United Kingdom$11.439.50 Pounds$11.32 (at a rate of 1.19)163.85 (at a rate of 17.25)
Germany$10.599.82 Euros$10.16 (at a rate of 1.03)147.31 (at a rate of 15.00)
A collage showing DUBAWA Ghana’s conversion. 

Evidently, the figures quoted by the claimants are inaccurate. 

How does Ghana’s current minimum wage compare to what exists in neighbouring countries?

Ghana’s neighbours are Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, and Togo.

In finding out about the wage situation in these three countries, we relied on data from WageIndicator Foundation, an organisation that “provides coherent, independent and accessible labour market information for 206 countries.”

The wages (monthly) for Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, and Togo are originally in CFA West African Franc but would be converted to US Dollars. Also, the monthly wage will be divided by 30 days to ascertain the daily value before the conversion.

CountryMonthly Wage / Daily WageConversion to US Dollars (at a rate of 0.0016)Rate when converted to Ghana Cedis (at a rate of 0.023)
Ivory CoastCFA 60,000 monthly / CFA 2,000 daily3.12 (Daily)45.21 (Daily)
Burkina FasoCFA 34,664 monthly /  CFA 1,155 daily1.80 (Daily)26.11 (Daily)
TogoCFA 35,000 monthly / CFA 1,166 daily1.82 (Daily)26.36 (Daily)

According to WageIndicator, these figures are valid as of November 2022.

Conclusion

The minimum wage figures quoted for France ($10.71), the UK ($11.43), and Germany (10.59) by the claimants are inaccurate. However, even among neighbouring countries, Ghana’s revised minimum wage of GHC 14.88, which is equivalent to $1.03 (at a rate of 0.069), is far less when compared to the rates in neighbouring countries.

Show More

Related Articles

Make a comment

Back to top button