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Living wage will improve Current Account deficit

Minto for Mayor

2 September 2013

Media release:

Living wage will improve Current Account deficit

New Zealand’s current account deficit will be significantly reduced if the Living Wage ($18.40 per hour) is paid to New Zealand workers.

The companies paying close to the minimum wage are large corporations like Skycity Casino and McDonalds. Low wages are the main reason for their large profits which find their way overseas.

The living wage would keep much more of that money in New Zealand and reduce our current account deficit.

Instead of subsidising low wages with Working for Families workers should be paid decent wages directly by these corporations.

Over the past 20 years workers have lost out to shareholders as New Zealand workers’ share of GDP (Gross Domestic Profit) dropped from 56% to around 45%. This loss for workers has been taken in corporate profits and since 1984 our current account deficit has ballooned as more of these profits move overseas.

As foreign corporations take over an ever larger share of the New Zealand economy the problem is exacerbated.

Under Minto for Mayor all Auckland Council employees and employees of council contractors would be paid a minimum of the living wage ($18.40 per hour) which would be funded by cuts to the salaries of the mayor, CEOs and senior managers at the Council and Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs).

Minto for Mayor would set a maximum salary of five times the living wage ($191,360) for council staff with the Mayor paid four times the living wage ($153,088) compared to $240,000 now.


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