Ministry denies NT$19,500 wage for industry conscripts
The Ministry of the Interior's ( MOI) National Conscription Agency ( NCA, ) yesterday denied that the “industry reserves alternative service” (
) only gave a monthly wage of NT$19,500 to conscripts who were tied to serve three years in the program.
The newly amended Enforcement Statute for Substitute Services ( ) , which included the implementation of the program, has faced controversy since its release last month over the alleged monthly wage of NT19,500 for graduates with a bachelor’s degree, who were not covered by the Labor Standards Act ( ).
The NCA clarified that during the second year of the program, conscripts’ wages fall in line with the market rate, and denied binding them to a three- year contract of only NT$19,500 per month.
Officials said that while the conscripts under the program are not covered by the Labor Standards Act in the first year, conscripts are provided with better insurance packages than normal workers.
The industry reserves alternative service is another optional route, apart from substitute service conscripts and research and development alternative service ( ), the NCA said, and reiterated that conscripts will have to negotiate their wages at the final stage of the program with the draftee and employer prior to entering the program.
The NCA official stated that alternative service draftees will not consider the industry reserves alternative service program if they are dissatisfied with the wages.
The service is performed in three stages: the first stage requires 28 days of basic training, in which draftees share the same privileges as military privates. The second stage, which lasts a year, includes the draftees serving in private companies.
During the 11 months in the second stage of the conscript’s service, t he company will need to pay the government NT$28,000 to employ a conscript who has a bachelor’s degree. The conscript will then be paid a monthly wage of NT$19,500, while the government will use the remaining NT8,500 to pay for his food, clothing expenses, insurance and tuition fees at Cheng Gong Ling ( ).
The new service program is scheduled for implementation in the second half of 2016, starting off with 1,000 vacancies available for constricts.