Australia’s 2.7 million minimum wage and low-paid workers on awards are receiving a wage increase of up to 5.2 per cent on Friday- the most generous in 16 years to cope with soaring inflation and cost of living pressures.
The National Minimum Wage, which covers workers not included in an award or in a registered individual contract, will increase by $40 per week from July 1.
Australia’s 2.7 million minimum wage and low-paid workers on awards are receiving a wage increase of up to 5.2 per cent – the most generous in 16 years to cope with soaring inflation and cost of living pressures
The 5.2 per cent increase sees the new legal minimum set at $812.60 a week or $21.38 per hour.
While the low-paid working in retail will receive a pay increase on July 1, workers in the tourism and hospitality sectors will have to wait until October 1.
The new minimum wage adds up to $42,255 a year for those working full-time – up $2,080 from $40,175.
The increase was above the 5.1 per cent inflation rate and was the most generous since 2006 during the mining boom.
But that generous increase could still see the lowest paid get a real wages cut with Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe forecasting seven per cent inflation in 2022 for the first time in 32 years.
The minimum wage only directly affects 180,000 workers.
Another 2.5 million workers on awards are only receiving a 4.6 per cent rise, as are Australia’s 191,000 apprentices.
The National Minimum Wage, which covers workers not included in an award or in a registered agreement, will increase by $40 per week from July 1 (pictured, young mates out in the Rocks in Sydney)
Their pay increases lag behind inflation, which means they are effectively suffering a cut in real wages, under the existing inflation pace.
Like those on the minimum wage, workers on modern awards will get a $40 a week pay boost if they earn more than $869.60 a week.
A first-year apprentice electrician from July 1 will be getting 57.9 per cent of the $42,255 minimum wage, meaning a salary of just $24,466.
Women will benefit the most by the minimum wage increase at 59.1 per cent or 1,571,100 women, according to a joint press release from Treasurer Jim Chalmers and Employment Minister Tony Burke.
There are 1,088,300 men or 40.9 per cent who will see a pay rise.
Almost two-thirds of Australians receiving a pay rise are part-time employees at 62.6 per cent. This compares to 37.7 per cent of full time workers.
The health care and social assistance, accommodation and food services, and retail trade are the industries where the highest number of employees will benefit from the minimum wage hike.