Karen Lai Pei-hei, 16, Tak Nga Secondary School
I think increasing the minimum wage will lead to inflation. People might be earning a little more money but the cost of living, especially rent and food, is going up so quickly that I don't think their quality of life will get better even with a wage increase. In fact, the quality of life for people on minimum wage might actually be worse because of high inflation.
Mukhjot Kaur, 15, St Margaret's Girls' College, Hong Kong
The increase in the minimum wage will not make much of a difference to people's lifestyle. Hong Kong has high living standards. So a hike in the minimum wage will be followed by price rises, or new policies will be introduced, like the 50-cent charge for plastic shopping bags. It is a vicious cycle so it's the poor who will continue to suffer.
Carrie Hui Wai-ying, 16, Ma On Shan Tsung Tsin Secondary School
The increase in minimum wage, although very small, will definitely be a good thing. The wealth gap in Hong Kong is very big. The poor certainly need more money to lead a decent life. I worked as a waitress on minimum wage last summer, so I understand how hard it is for workers to make ends meet. What I earned was a kind of "pocket money", but for those who have a family to provide for, it is barely enough. I think the rise will benefit low-income families.
Roy Ng Mau-hei, 15, The YWCA Hioe Tjo Yoeng College
The main purpose of having a minimum wage is to help the poor have a better life. Will this small increase bring any substantial changes to their lives? Obviously not.
Research by the Census and Statistics Department in April showed that the customer price index has increased by 4 per cent. Just imagine: a low-skilled worker who works eight hours a day will only get HK$20 more with the new minimum wage. It won't even cover the cost of a good meal after a hard day's work.
The Hong Kong government should bring the minimum wage in line with the inflation rate.
Joy Pamnani, 16, PLK Ngan Po Ling College
I don't think it will make a big difference. The real problem lies in income inequality, and the government should work towards reducing the rich-poor gap rather than just setting a minimum wage for workers.
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