In a surprising move, President Obama proposed during the State of the Union address to increasing the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour. A perpetually controversial issue, the minimum wage remains a flashpoint between progressives and conservatives, with proponents saying it keeps full-time workers out of poverty and opponents arguing it increases unemployment.
As the map above shows, only a handful of countries lack minimum wage laws. Most countries have a minimum-wage law or agreement. In many cases, those laws guarantee a minimum wage only to workers in certain industries or locations. And many countries with minimum-wage laws struggle to enforce them.
Correction, Feb. 21, 2013: Due to an editing error, this article originally stated that Congo, Kenya, and Pakistan do not have minimum wage laws. They have partial minimum wage laws.
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