Some garment workers were delighted to hear that their plight for a pay increase was finally answered yesterday.
Garment workers of Lyndhurst Limited in Kalabu Tax Free Zone in Valelevu, Nasinu said following government's announcement of a 9.9 per cent increase in wages they would be able to better support their families.
Garment worker Ragni Devi, who has been working at the factory for the past six years, welcomed the decision.
"It is the best news I have heard. I am happy that finally someone has noticed and given importance to the hard work that we do," Mrs Devi said.
Mrs Devi, who has two children attending school, said she was getting $2.45 an hour which accumulated to about $100 per week.
"It is very difficult to support the family with $100 per week because the cost of living is very high in Fiji," she said.
Mrs Devi said with the little she earned, it was a matter of survival for her family.
"I am glad that now my family will have more to share and eat," she said.
Another worker, Luse Niufoou, who earned $2.20 per hour, shared similar sentiments.
"I will be able to support my children and pay their school fees on time," Mrs Niufoou said.
She said she had been in the industry for the last four years.
"I have bought a lot of items on hire-purchase for my family and with the increase in wages I will be able to clear my payments," Mrs Niufoou said.
The owner of Lyndhurst Limited, Robert Cromb also welcomed government's decision, saying it was about time that the plight of garment workers was heard.
"My workers are very good. It is good that their wages are going up because the cost of living is also rising," Mr Cromb said.
Meanwhile, garment workers, who are learners, will be paid an hourly rate of $1.81 from $1.65 while other workers will receive $2.15 per hour, an increase of 19 cents from their previous hourly rate of $1.96.