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Working people must be kept at the centre of the response to inflation, says the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions.

The impacts of both inflation and the Reserve Bank’s response to it through higher interest rates have fallen most heavily on low-income families, said NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff following today’s December quarter CPI release.

“Working people are the most affected by inflation, so it’s important that the Government continues to support working families and help real wages to rise. Consistent increases to the Minimum Wage must be part of that.”

Wagstaff said there were many reasons to be hopeful about the latest CPI data. Inflation appears to have stabilised, and quarterly inflation was back to levels seen in 2021. 

“The New Zealand economy is currently one of the best performers in the world. Growth is strong, and unemployment is very low. New Zealand appears to be well placed to manage any economic challenges ahead.

“Internationally, we are seeing consistent evidence that the drivers of inflation are easing. Inflation is falling in a number of countries, including the US.

“Food and housing remain the biggest contributors to inflation. Tackling this will require long term change and investment to ensure these essentials are more affordable for people.”