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Labour's David Parker hits out over wage gap with Australia, says PM Key has failed to fulfil promise of narrowing gap
The wage gap between New Zealand and Australia has grown to the extent that Kiwis living across the ditch can now earn as much in four days as New Zealanders living at home receive for more than five days work, says Labour Party Finance spokesman David Parker.
Parker says the median weekly wage gap with Australia has "ballooned" by $60 to $180 per week since John Key became Prime Minister in 2008, despite the National Party’s promise to close the gap. Parker's statement made no mention, or comparison, of tax and living cost differences between New Zealand and Australia.
“In Australia the median wage is $1,067, in New Zealand it’s $887, according to the latest statistics. To make up the difference Kiwis need to work another full day and another hour on top of that. It’s no surprise 182,000 Kiwis have left under National," Parker says.
“Kiwis who left for Australia only need to work a four day week to get what they were earning here. What a luxury. Of course they are leaving in droves, with a record 54,000 buying a one-way ticket last year. John Key told all New Zealanders that a fundamental purpose of his Government would be, ‘to narrow the wage gap between ourselves and Australia, and to grow local wages in New Zealand'," Parker added.
“National made a promise it can’t fulfil, it’s time they admitted they broke their word to New Zealanders."
Parker says New Zealanders want a hands-on government willing to roll up its sleeves.
"Labour has a vision of a high-tech, high-growth and high-wage New Zealand. We will take the steps necessary to make that happen."