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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Wage cuts suggested by the Reserve Bank of Fiji

The Reserve Bank of Fiji has warned Government to cut take home pay in the civil service to prevent any further interest rate rises. The Reserve Bank said fiscal policy should support monetary policy.

The Bank said Government needed to put in place measures that discouraged import substitution, reduced take home pay or reduced the extent of borrowing for the national budget.

The Finance Minister said wages and salaries were a major expenditure of government and one area that could be looked at in cost cutting. However, the Minister added that cutting wages and salaries was something that could not be done overnight as it involved people. He has not ruled out the possibility of increasing taxes and tariffs saying there were always several options available.

The Reserve Bank said that while Fiji's foreign reserves were adequate at the moment, it was concerned about the future because commodity exports like sugar, garments, agriculture, forestry and fishing were under-performing.

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