Thukten Zangpo

The finance ministry has asked the State-owned enterprises (SOEs) to submit their revised pay and allowances approved by their respective boards to the finance ministry by November 10.

The SOEs must submit their company and position-specific allowances for the ministry to endorse to prevent the proliferation of allowances. The revision will be effective only after the respective boards and finance ministry finalise it.

On company and the position-specific allowance, Finance Minister Namgay Tshering said that it would be as per the respective company’s service rule, however, keeping relevancy and affordability in view by the board. “It will continue if the board decides to retain.”

The minister during the Meet-the-Press session yesterday, said that in earlier SOE pay proposals, most of the SOEs aligned their pay with civil servants’ pay raise between 55 to 74 percent while few proposed differentiated revisions based on their affordability.

Lyonpo said that the government will support the pay raise for Bhutan Broadcasting Service, Bhutan Livestock Development Corporation Limited, and Farm Machinery Corporation Limited. “These SOEs have a social mandate rather than profit-making.”

However, he said that these three SOEs’ revenue performance will be assessed annually by the finance ministry and respective boards to ensure their self-sustainability.

For a company like Kuensel, whether or not the company can afford pay revision will depend on the company’s ability to generate enough profit or have sufficient funds to cover the raise.

The finance ministry approved a pay revision between 46 and 72 percent for SOEs on October 20 this year.

With the clean wage system, the SOEs’ employees will receive 20 percent of the minimum basic pay as the house rent allowances.

Unlike civil servants’ leave travel concession (LTC) and leave encashment prorated monthly, the SOE employees will receive as per the respective company’s internal service rule.

For revision of pay and allowances for chief executive officers (CEOs), it would be reviewed and approved by the respective boards, depending upon the affordability. CEOs will not receive a house rent allowance, but are eligible for a contract allowance of up to 60 percent of the minimum basic pay and other allowance as per the contract agreement.

The Performance Based Variable Incentive, PBVI for the SOEs will be entitled at 25 percent of the basic pay, at par with the Druk Holding and Investments Companies which will be decided based on the performance of the companies by the board.