EPMU National Secretary Andrew Little is warning of a desire for wage rises of around 5%. This is understandable with inflation so high, but risks a vicious cycle where inflation continues to get higher and higher and our wage levels relative to Australia drop. Closing the gap with Australia needs wage rises which reflect improved productivity – not wage rises which are just to compensate for prices rises. That is not to say people should not have wage increases to stop their incomes falling in real terms – just that it won’t close the trans-Tasman gap.
Little also calls for clarity over tax cuts:
He also hit out at the government’s “dithering” over tax cuts. One week the government was saying the cuts would take place this year, and then the next week it was suggesting they would be next year. “People are looking for some sort of relief now. People need it, and the government should understand that very clearly.”