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Workers around the world are falling behind. The International Labor Organization's latest Global Wage Report finds that, excluding China, real (inflation-adjusted) wages grew at an annual rate of just 1.1 percent in 2017, down from 1.8 percent in 2016 . That is the slowest pace since 2008 .In the advanced G-20 economies, average real wages grew by a mere 0.4 percent in 2017, compared to 1.7 percent growth in 2015 . In emerging markets, average wage growth in 2017, at 4.3 percent, was faster than in the advanced G-20 economies, but still slower than the previous year (4.9 percent). Overall, wage growth in Asian economies mostly decelerated in 2017 .To be sure, large labor-surplus economies' deepening integration into the global market, together with increased reliance on automation and artificial intelligence, has weakened workers' bargaining power and shifted labor demand into very specific and limited sectors.At the same time, the government has expanded other forms of social protections for workers, all while pursuing industrial policies geared toward boosting innovation and productivity growth, thus moving the country up the global value chain.
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