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DESPITE the ongoing dispute over the appropriate level of wages in Malaysia, a recent study has shown that the country ranked in the top five for paying the highest average salaries in Southeast Asia.

Out of the 11 Southeast Asian nations, Malaysia is ranked fourth for being the nation with the highest income RM6,610 being the average salary, as quoted by Tempo following a study by time and productivity software Time Champ.

Not only that, another survey by Salary Explorer also showed RM29,400 as the nation’s highest average salary whereas RM1,670 is estimated to be the lowest average salary earned, based on the participants’ responses.

Furthermore, the study’s salary structure depicted 65% of Malaysians earning between RM3,850 to RM9,890 while 20% of Malaysian salaries are capped at RM3,850 or less, 10% are estimated to earn RM9,890 to RM12,600 and finally 5% of Malaysians take home RM12,600 or more.

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In the study, Singapore takes first place with the average income of S$8,573 (RM29,936), which, as quoted from Tempo, is “far above the global average” while Thailand comes in second with the lowest average salary ranging from 24,500 baht (RM3,149) and placed third in the region is Brunei Darussalam with its average salary of 3,230 BND (RM11,278), according to Salary Explorer.

Other Southeast Asian nations such as the Philippines came in fifth place, recording an average salary of 44,800 pesos (RM3,661) while Indonesia came in sixth place with an average salary of 12,200,000 rupiah (RM3,578), Vietnam in seventh place recording an average income of 17,300,000 VND (RM3,202) and Laos comes in eight with an average pay estimated to be around 4,570,000 Lao Kip (RM1,008).\

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The countries ranked at the bottom three are Cambodia in ninth place with the average salary calculated between 3,330,000.00 KHR (RM3,865), Myanmar in 10th place with an average income of 547,000 MMK (RM1,232), according to Salary Explorer and Timor Leste in last place recording an average salary of US$150 (RM709) to US$200 (RM945).