Inflated wage increase to harm small business

Written on the 10 June 2016

Inflated wage increase to harm small business

Today's State wage case decision will increase pressure on small businesses and act as a further barrier to employment, says the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia (CCI).

CCI Chief Executive Officer Deidre Willmott said the $13 per week increase is over and above the predicted level of inflation and will mean less working hours, particularly for part-time and casual workers.

"Small businesses are the lifeblood of the Western Australian economy and they need to be able to grow and create jobs without additional cost pressures," Ms Willmott said.

"Most small business owners will not be able to pass this increase in costs onto consumers, so owners will likely work more hours in the business themselves taking shifts away from part-time and casual workers and inhibiting job creation.

"While today's decision will reduce the gap between the state and national minimum wages somewhat, WA's small sole traders and partnerships in WA will still be paying a $20 per week more than businesses covered by the national industrial relations system.

"Particularly while Western Australia is working to broaden our economy, it is disappointing that our small business owners will continue to be penalised with higher labour costs than other states.

"CCI has been calling for some time for the State Government to transfer remaining industrial relations powers for the private sector to the Federal system the fact that the smallest employers in WA are still expected to pay $20 per week more than employers in the national system once more raises the question, why are we retaining a separate system?"

Source: CCIWA Media Release

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