Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland wages no longer lowest in UK

Money Image copyright Dominic Lipinski

Northern Ireland no longer props up the UK's wages league table, after pay growth outpaced inflation for the first time since 2009.

A typical full-time worker now earns more than £25,000, a rise of 5.4% over the year to April.

Workers in Wales and the East Midlands earned less, according to a government survey based on samples of tax records.

But overall, Northern Ireland wages are about £2,500 below the UK average.

The details are contained in the 2015 Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings.

The UK-wide survey of employers is based on a 1% sample of employee jobs.

It puts the median weekly salary in Northern Ireland at £485, compared to £528 in the UK.

Enterprise Minister Jonathan Bell said the increase in wages is "welcome news."

But he added: "More needs to be done to promote and retain higher paid jobs in the private sector."

The report said the growth in earnings was widely distributed across industry sectors and occupations.

According to the survey, the typical Northern Ireland public sector workers earned £577 a week (up 1.6%).

In the private sector the figure it was £429 (up 6.7%).

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