Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Executive Director Andrew McKellar says a 5.2% increase in the minimum wage will be a “considerable burden” on businesses, while Treasurer Jim Chalmers has welcomed to measure.
McKellar argued that companies would have problems with another increase in operating costs.
“We don’t agree. We would say that right now companies are facing three key challenges,” McKellar said.
“They are facing great difficulties in accessing the labor they need, there is an intense disruption in the supply chain and we are seeing very significant peaks in energy prices at the moment.
“All of this is compounded by supply-side pressures. Input costs are rising and this is fueling inflation.
“Any decision that comes at this time, at the upper end of the range of possible results, will increase costs for companies. As we have said, this cost will be an additional $ 7.9 billion that will affect the final result of the affected companies. “This will increase inflationary pressures.”
Chalmers tweeted his satisfaction with the measure after the new government called for an increase to match inflation.
The RBA has forecast that inflation will rise to seven percent by the end of the year.
McKellar said his group wanted a more “flexible” system to raise wages in different industries.
“It certainly adds to that pressure at a time when labor is very difficult to access,” McKellar said.
“Right now we are seeing record levels of job vacancies. One of the things that stands out about this decision and the commission has tried to really nuance a very complicated decision and there are a number of different elements.
“What stands out is that this process of national wage cases, the way it feeds on modern awards, is an outdated process.
“It is a process that has had its day, it is not compatible with the needs of a modern, internationally competitive economy, which must be operating flexibly and responding to the circumstances, challenges and the need to promote productivity if we are. they will have higher living standards in the future.
“For the minimum wage, well, that is, the 180,000 people with the lowest wages, the wage safety net. When it flows into the modern award system, that has to be looked at on a case-by-case basis.
“We need to return to a much more effective business negotiation, to a flexible, market-driven wage configuration.”