Australia increases minimum wage by 2.5% to benefit 2.2 million workers
The FWC has set the new minimum wage at A$20.33 (US$15.61) per hour. For full-time employees, the increase was fixed at A$18.80 (US$14.4), raising their weekly minimum wage to A$772.60 (US$593.28).
FWC president Iain Ross said the “markedly better” economic performance this year justified the increase. Nevertheless, due to the effects of the pandemic, the new rates will be implemented in different phases depending on the type of industry the employees work in.
Workers on the general retail award will see the increase in September, while those working in aviation, tourism, fitness and some retail trade sectors will need to wait till November for the rise. All other workers will receive the increase from July 1.
“We are satisfied that the operative dates we have determined are justified, consistent with the statutory framework, and strike an appropriate balance between the interest of employers and employees,” Ross said.
Employer groups like Australian Industry Group and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry had proposed a 1.1% increase, while labour unions had pushed for a 3.5% rise.
The new policy will benefit more than 2.2 million Australians who are earning the minimum wages or have their pay set by awards that will increase under the new regulations, according to The Guardian.