According to Vice President of the Federation of Thai Industries Wanlop Wittanakorn, Thailand is likely to face a shortage of more than 500,000 workers next year.

Mr. Wanlop said the industrial segment has a huge demand of at least 500,000 workers in 2014. Eighty percent of the number consists of unskilled labor, while the remaining 20% is skilled labor.

He said the estimate is made given the constant global economic recovery and a 5% growth in the Thai exports.

However, Mr. Wanlop expressed concerns that political parties might use a minimum wage hike as tool to lure voters. And if that happened, the wages could rise to a range of 400-500 baht by 2015, causing a heavy burden to the capital costs.

The FTI Vice President said that the current minimum wage policy has already put several SME operators in a difficult spot. The FTI will, therefore, focus on enhancement of production efficiency and reduction of labor dependency in 2014. He said the measures are strongly recommended for SME operators in rural areas.

News from NNT