Future Issues of Indefinite Employment Reclassification Rule － Learning from the Precedent in South Korea －
Social Improvement and Life Design Research Department Research fellow Kim Myoungjung
- In both Japan as well as South Korea, the increase in non-regular workers can be observed as a long-term trend.
- In 2007, as the increase in non-regular workers accelerated, the South Korean government implemented the “Act on the Protection of Non-Regular Workers.”
- Ten years have already elapsed since South Korea introduced its Act on the Protection of Non-Regular Workers. Since this new system has been implemented, socio-economic changes and the impact of the system have somewhat reduced the ratio of non-regular workers in the workplace, but non-regular workers still account for over 30% of all jobs. Further, the malignant practice of hiring cutoff remains as it is.
- Even those who have been reclassified as indefinite-term contractual workers due to the implementation of the Act on the Protection of Non-Regular Workers have seen no improvement in their working conditions, and many are faced with an increasingly wide gap in wages and benefits when compared with regular employees.
- Japanese Government applied its own “indefinite employment reclassification rule” from April 2018.
- Even though Section 20 of Japan’s Labor Contracts Act prohibits discrimination against fixed-term contract workers as compared with indefinite-term contract workers, it does not address discrimination against indefinite-term contract workers as compared against regular employees.
- Even if hiring cutoff is not as severe as it was in South Korea, it is feared that neglecting to take measures to improve working conditions for indefinite-term contract workers will create new disparities between indefinite-term contract workers and regular employees.
- We continue to monitor what measures the Japanese and South Korean governments will take to improve working conditions for non-regular workers and indefinite-term contract workers.
2――Definition of non-regular employee in Japan and South Korea
(1) Definition of non-regular employee in Japan
(2) Definition of non-regular employee in South Korea
3――Background of Act on Protection of Non-regular
employee’s enforcement and changes after that
(1) South Korean government enforced Act on Protection of Non-regular
(2) Changes after enforcement of Act on Protection of Non-regular employee
(3) Primary Results of Labor Mobility Panel Surveys by Mode of Employment
(1 – 8)
4――The Start of an “Indefinite Employment Reclassification Rule” in Japan