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Pay hike not due to unions

Pay hike not due to unions

Increased pay statistics aren't a reflection of union activity, says Business NZ.

Chief Executive Phil O'Reilly says the recent wage movement is clearly related to the skills and labour shortage.

"Our member surveys show unavailability of labour and skills is the number one issue for business. In this situation, pay hikes are inevitable.

"To claim that the industrial action for a 5% increase in engineering firms is the reason for the recent overall wage growth is stretching credibility. The number of workers rewarded as a result of that industrial action was not great, since most employers involved are small businesses with only a few employees.

"It's unfortunate that labour costs are going up, but not productivity. Pay increases without productivity increases just means more cost to businesses and they become less competitive - not good for business or workers. We'd want to see more focus on productivity improvement in the future," Mr O'Reilly said.

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