Turkey hikes minimum wage by 55%

President Erdoğan said on Dec. 22 that Turkey's minimum wage was being raised by some 54.66% to 8,506 lira ($455) for 2023.

Duvar English

The monthly net minimum salary will be 8,506 liras ($455), Turkish President Recep Erdoğan said during a televised press conference on Dec. 22. In the second half of the 2022, the minimum wage stood at 5,500 liras.

The new gross minimum wage, before deductions such as social security premiums and income taxes, is 10,008 liras ($536).

"We increased the nominal minimum wage 30 times, which was 184 liras in 2002," Erdoğan said while announcing the new figure.

Despite Erdoğan's remarks, the cost of living expenses in Turkey became painful amid massive inflation.

Turkish Finance and Treasury Minister Nureddin Nebati said on Twitter that they aim 24.9 percent inflation rate for the end of 2023, and the hike in minimum wage was realized in this regard.

In the new year, the state support of 100 liras per minimum wage worker to employers will be increased to 250 liras.

The head of Turkey’s largest labor union Türk-İş, Ergün Atalay, said they are not satisfied with the new figure as they were expecting at least 9,000 liras.

The opposition DEVA (Future and Progress) Party leader Ali Babacan criticized the hike and said the real inflation rate is close to 200 percent. Babacan in a video message called government to hold early elections in March.

In July, minimum wage rose by 30 percent for a second time in 2022. Before that, Turkey hiked its minimum wage in December 2021 by a massive 50 percent to 4,250 liras per month in the wake of a currency crash and inflation spike with 24-year high figures.

With this increase, the minimum wage increased by 100 percent in a year.

In November, the government-run Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) reported an annual inflation rate of 84.39, whereas the independent inflation group ENAG put the figure at 170.70 percent.