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Friday November 1, 2013 MYT 7:33:00 PM
Friday November 1, 2013 MYT 7:34:50 PM
JAKARTA: Tens of thousands of workers went on strike across Indonesia Friday for a second straight day, calling for huge salary hikes as Southeast Asia's top economy enjoys a prolonged boom.
But turnout was lower than the millions unions had promised and the labour movement was dealt a further blow when the Indonesian capital said it would raise the minimum wage by just 11 percent next year.
The wage in Jakarta will go up from 2.2 million rupiah (around $200) to around 2.4 million - a rise of just 11 percent next year, compared with a 44 percent rise workers in the capital got this year.
"The wage has been decided at 2.44 (million) rupiah," Jakarta governor Joko Widodo told reporters.
"There are risks to every decision. We hope this will not lead to any (rejection) by labourers," he added.
Thousands protested in front of his office, but it was "orderly and under control", national police spokesman Ronny Sompie told AFP.
"Around 50,000 workers took part in the strike across the country today, but they were mostly concentrated in Jakarta. The rallies were peaceful," adding that 30,000 workers protested in the capital.
Only around 100,000 went on strike on Thursday, far below the three million unions predicted, taking some pressure off the government and employers who are seeking to limit wage increases.
The strike was called for workers to demand hefty pay rises as the cost of living rockets due to surging inflation, which has been driven up in recent months by an unpopular fuel price hike.
Industrial action typically heats up in October and November as local governments decide on minimum wages for the following year in their areas.
Workers in Jakarta this year received a 44 percent increase in minimum salaries and others across the country have also received sizeable raises. -AFP
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