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ACT Leader David Seymour says if minimum wages do not reduce the number of jobs available, left-wing grounds should be advocating for a much higher minimum wage than $22.10/hr.
“Labour and the Helen Clark Foundation claim there’s no cost to raising the minimum wage and that we can boost productivity and grow the economy by passing new laws. If that’s the case, why not advocate for a minimum wage of $50 an hour?” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“Basic economic theory and empirical evidence on higher minimum wages both point to fewer jobs being available.”
A real living wage would reduce the number of available jobs by 30,000, and the Treasury says a higher minimum wage would not lift productivity, or overall wage levels and job creation.
A minimum wage increase would reduce international competition, and it is not an effective tool for lifting any wage levels overall.
“The reality that both Labour and the Helen Clark Foundation need to confront is that workers who can’t demand a higher minimum wage will no longer have jobs as businesses automate or downsize,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“The economy is still in recession, and 37,000 people lost jobs in the last quarter. Labour raised the minimum wage earlier this year as the economy was heading into recession and businesses into lockdown.”
If the minimum wage were to increase next year, it would be an act of an ‘economic vandalism’ ACT Leader David Seymour says.
“SMEs can’t keep up with the constant stream of costs and rules being imposed by Labour.”
“ACT’s caucus has seven small business owners. We understand the struggles that employers are facing. We would cut GST to 10 per cent for 12 months and pause new minimum wage increases to boost consumption and give business owners a breather.”
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