Not all Samsung units are freezing 2015 pay

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Not all Samsung units are freezing 2015 pay

Despite Samsung Electronics’ decision at the end of February to freeze salaries for 2015, some Samsung companies have raised base salaries by up to 3 percent.

Samsung C&T Corporation, the engineering, construction and trade division of Samsung, had an 83 billion won ($73.6 million) operating profit last year, which was better than expected, giving the company leeway for raises. A 3 percent rise in base salary will add to workers’ increased allowances after the government’s regulatory change to base wage calculations, which will ultimately result in an increase in annual compensation over 5 percent.

Samsung Electronics, the No. 1 company in Korea by market cap, announced Feb. 26 it would freeze salaries for this year due to bad results in 2014 and some other Samsung companies followed suit the next day.

Samsung Display, Samsung Electro-Mechanics and Samsung SDI instantly jumped on the wage-freeze bandwagon.

That caused fears of a ripple effect not only across Samsung affiliates but throughout Korea’s corporate landscape. Executives of the Samsung group scrambled to make it clear to the press that not the entire Samsung affiliated would follow suit.

But Cheil Industries Wednesday announced it would increase its base salaries by almost 2 percent for this year and Samsung Life, the insurance arm, is also expected to increase its salaries and announce the amount later this week.

Except for LG, which is escalating salaries by 4 percent this year, other major conglomerates have yet to conclude salary negotiation. Hyundai Motor Group, the nation’s largest car company, is expected go to through a tough time this year since it has one of the most hardline labor unions.

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