“The Government should stop wasting people’s time and kill off their backwards Fair Pay Agreements Bill, because the next Government with ACT in it is going to get rid of them anyway,” ACT’s Small Business spokesperson Chris Baillie says.

“This policy is a relic of the 1890s which has been dusted off purely to help Labour’s union mates. It will do nothing to advance hardworking middle New Zealanders.

“We need greater productivity to pay for Covid, instead the Government’s answer is more byzantine bureaucracy that will only create more complications and slow businesses down.

“MBIE has warned the Government that FPAs will reduce productivity and make it harder for employers to grow. If they want to grow wages and give employees a fairer crack, they need to stop hammering businesses and allow the labour market to flourish.

“A centre-right Government simply won’t put up with such regressive policy, it’s going to end up a waste of time anyway.

“Even if the ink dries on any union contracts under this law, they'll be one offs, because the law will be gone and there'll be no more.

“We want a country of innovation and productivity growth. Introducing a more bureaucratic way to set pay just won’t support that.”