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January 21, 2013

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Eateries boost pay to remain open

SOME local restaurants are increasing wages and benefits to attract cooks and waiters as their migrant worker employees return home for the Spring Festival.

The monthly wage of a chief cook has risen to more than 8,000 yuan (US$1,287) for a company canteen in the Pudong New Area, while the pay for waiters has gone up by about 1,000 yuan to an average of 3,000 yuan.

The problem is most acute at small restaurants that, unlike hotels and large restaurants, don't usually have workers sign labor contracts.

Some restaurants, worried about their workforce, have stopped taking reservations for New Year Eve's dinner.

"It is out of question that my restaurant will close the doors if my chef suddenly leaves," said a small restaurant owner, who declined to be identified.

"When the waiters are gone, I can ask my family members to do me a favor and fetch the dishes. But when the chef is gone, I am totally at a loss. The restaurant couldn't survive," he said.


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