The math doesn't add up
THE EDITOR, Sir:
Teachers should indeed be anxious about the coming wage negotiations - or impositions - given the Budget figures as below (from the Estimates of Expenditure and Fiscal Policy Paper):
For the coming year, the Ministry of Education would need $86.7b to equal 2014-15 expenditure ($81.8b) in real terms, given six per cent inflation, yet even less, $79.9bn, is allocated. About 70 per cent is salaries, so clearly no allowance for real increases, yet alone nominal ones.
By 2018-19, $103.3b would be needed to maintain real salaries at the 2014-15 level, yet only $97.2b is allocated.
Again for the coming year, public-sector salaries would need $168.2b to equal 2014-15 expenditure ($158.7b) in real terms, given six per cent inflation, yet only $165.2b is allocated. By 2018-19, $200.4b would be needed to maintain real salaries at the 2014-15 level, yet only $196.0b is allocated.