60% of manufacturing workers cut living expenses as incomes shrink

By Le Tuyet   August 6, 2023 | 11:48 pm PT
60% of manufacturing workers cut living expenses as incomes shrink
Workers in an industrial park in Binh Tan District, Ho Chi Minh City after work in 2021. Photo by VnExpress/ Quynh Tran
With incomes shrinking as factories cut production, workers have had to make changes to their lifestyle or work harder to make ends meet, according to a job search company.

Navigos Group, in a report this month after polling more than 1,000 people working at 500 enterprises of various sizes in industries like textile, footwear, consumer goods, and industrial products, said 60% have had to reduce their living expenses, 37% have other jobs on the side and 3% work overtime whenever they get the opportunity.

It found that 91% of firms in construction materials manufacturing, 44% in textile and garment and leather had lower revenue.

It was 22-37% for the automobile, pharmaceutical, biotech, and industrial products sectors.

To cope, some firms have downsized production by closing factories, reducing the number of production lines, slashing working hours, and laying off workers, leading to a sharp decrease in workers’ wages.

Well over half saw incomes fall by 30-50% 34% by 10% and 2% by more than 50%.

Besides salaries, most also lost overtime incomes and other benefits.

Cutting living costs has been almost the first option.

A survey by the Institute for Workers and Trade Unions during the Covid outbreak in 2021 found similar results. Some 21% of respondents ate more instant noodles, 48% cut their daily meat intake, 22% switched from shopping for food to depending on relatives, and 15% had to reduce the number of meals.

According to Navigos Group, people are looking for ways to improve their skills and professional qualifications to achieve a competitive advantage when looking for jobs.

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