4 Aug 2010

Government on back foot again over wage gap

5:45 pm on 4 August 2010

The Government has been put on the back foot again over its plan to close the wage gap with Australia by 2025.

In Parliament during Question Time on Wednesday, Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee had to acknowledge that, in dollar terms, the gap in wages is larger now than when National Party returned to office.

While Mr Brownlee acknowledges that Australians are earning even more now than New Zealand workers, he says in percentage terms the gap has narrowed.

As he did last week Mr Brownlee, who was answering on behalf of Prime Minister John Key, tossed a range of statistics about to undermine the Labour Party's questions.

But then Transport Minister Steven Joyce said the Government had no targets or milestones for closing the gap, after Mr Brownlee had said last week there were.