28 Jan 2009

Hold minimum wage, says business group

10:02 am on 28 January 2009

The Government is under pressure from business leaders to freeze the minimum wage.

Ministers are due on Monday to review the minimum wage for the coming year. The adult minimum wage is $12 an hour.

Business New Zealand chief executive Phil O'Reilly said businesses struggling to break even will lay off workers if they are faced with increasing costs that does nothing to boost sales.

The group argues low paid workers would be better off with a tax cut rather than an increase in the minimum wage.

Council of Trade Unions president Helen Kelly said the Government should increase the minimum wage because it would help boost spending.

The previous Government increased the adult minimum wage by 71%, compared to a 40% increase in general wage levels.