Release type: Joint Media Release


Welcome progress on wages growth


The Hon Tony Burke MP
Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for the Arts

The Albanese government welcomes new figures today showing wages growth has picked up even further since the change of government.

The Wage Price Index rose 3.3 per cent in the year to December, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Our economic plan is all about getting wages growing again in responsible ways. We’re pleased that it’s already starting to work, but we know that we need to see inflation moderate to secure real wages growth.

This is the fastest through-the-year growth rate since the December quarter of 2012.

The industries with the strongest WPI growth in the December quarter were accommodation and food services, arts and recreation services and manufacturing.

The former government spent a decade trying to deliberately suppress wages growth – now it’s turning around.

Inflation is the defining challenge for the Australian economy in 2023. The government has a plan to address inflation through providing responsible cost-of-living relief, repairing broken supply chains and restraining spending in a responsible budget.

Dealing with cost-of-living pressures also means ensuring ordinary Australian workers can earn enough to provide for their loved ones and get ahead.

There is no evidence of a wage-price spiral in our economy.

Wages growth isn’t the problem when it comes to inflation, it’s part of the solution to cost-of-living pressures.

We don’t have an inflation challenge in our economy because wages are too high, but because of a war in Ukraine, pressure on global supply chains, and other challenges in our own economy ignored for too long.

We seek wages growth which is strong and sustainable, and an economy which is more productive, competitive and inclusive.

That’s why we’ve supported wage rises for minimum and award wage workers, why we’re making it easier for parents to return to work, why we’re creating more TAFE and university places, and why we’re investing industries that create secure, well-paid jobs.

The Albanese government is focused on delivering the decent wages that Australians need and deserve.