Minimum Wage Decision


Minimum Wage Decision

The minimum wage panel of Fair Work Australia (“FWA”) handed down its annual decision on minimum wages at 10:00
am this morning. FWA has made the following determinations:

  • to increase the national minimum wage by $17.10 per week. This results in an increase from $15.51 per hour ($589.30 per week) to $15.96 per hour ($606.40 per week) and
  • 2.9% increases in hourly modern award minimum rates of pay across the board.

The increases awarded will take effect from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2012. By comparison, FWA increased minimum wages by $19.40 per week this time last year. The decision represents a compromise between the submissions put by union and employer associations.

The ACCI requested an increase of not more than $9.40 per week on an award-by-award basis and to the national minimum wage. It also requested exemptions from an increase for particular industry-specific employers which are facing significant challenges. The AiG requested an increase of $14 per week to both award minimum wages and the national minimum wage.

Its flat dollar proposal was designed to provide a proportionately higher benefit to the low paid, at a level it suggested would not
pose undue risks to the Australian economy.

The ACTU had proposed a $26 per week increase to award rates up to and including the C10 rate, as well to the national minimum wage. It also sought a 3.8% increase in award rates above the C10 level. It submitted that the earnings of award-reliant workers had fallen relative to the earnings of other
workers, something its proposed increases were designed to correct.

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