21 Sep 2009

Solomons teachers welcome pay increases

3:12 pm on 21 September 2009

Teachers in Solomon Islands are applauding a planned 9.5 percent increase to their salaries.

The government signed a deal with the National Teachers Association agreeing to a 4.5 percent increase in salaries that will be backdated to January this year, and another five percent in January next year.

The union initially asked for a 18.1 percent rise, but its chief industrial relations officer, John Hatimoana, says the government is doing what it can.

"The negotiation was based on the affordability. We explored other areas, especially when we looked at the overall economy of this country. We considered those things thoroughly and then eventually we agreed."

John Hatimoana says there's scope for further cost of living salary adjustment negotiations next year.

The prime minister, Dr Derek Sikua, says the government will award the same pay increase to other public servants.