Wages of foreign workers in South Korea from 10 Asian nations including Indonesia, Uzbekistan and Sri Lanka were slightly higher than the minimum wage, a poll showed Monday.
The survey by the Korea Federation of Small and Medium Business in May showed that Asian workers in South Korea earned a monthly average of 1,621,000 won (US$1,437), including sundry allowances like overtime pay and bonuses. A total of 1,058 Asian workers were polled in the survey.
The figure is 523,000 won higher than South Korea's average minimum wage of 1,098,000 won in 2013.
The average Asian worker's wage was 6.4 times higher than their monthly average wage of $222.4 in their native countries, said the lobby group for small- and medium-sized companies.
According to the findings, the workers' desired average salary was 2,065,000 won, up 88.1 percent compared with the monthly minimum wage and up 27.3 percent from their actual pays.
Most of the Asian employees come to South Korea to earn money and learn skills needed in doing business in their home country, the survey said.
Living in South Korea, they had a hard time due to different language, work culture and climate.
Of the respondents, 63.8 percent were in their 20s, followed by those in their 30s with 33.8 percent and people in their 40s with 0.8 percent.
"The poll was conducted to grasp the current working conditions of Asian workers in South Korea," an official at the lobby group said by phone.