Productivity must justify public sector pay rises, says Brown

Chancellor
Gordon Brown has said public sector pay rises must be set "at a
sustainable rate and justified by productivity".

He
told delegates the Confederation of British Industry national conference in
Manchester that he urged "the local authorities and firefighters to return
to talks linking pay to productivity".

He
said there was no future for Britain "in going back to the bad old
inflationary days of both the mid 1970s and late 1980s – inflationary and
unaffordable pay settlements, whether in the private sector or in the public
sector, and bailed out from the reserve, which so damaged economic
stability".

Brown
went on to say that looking inward was not an option in a world "where
business thinks globally".

"That
is why we support fundamental economic reform in Europe, including greater
financial market integration and a tougher pro-competition regime on products
and takeovers. And why we support the principle of British membership of the
single currency – and are currently undertaking preliminary and technical work
so we can make an assessment of the five economic tests by June next
year."

By
Quentin Reade

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