Hunter tourism operators concerned over increase to minimum wage

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The Hunter’s tourism industry says the increase in the minimum wage is just another challenge for local operators who are already facing uncertainty.


The Fair Work Commission’s raised the minimum wage to $640 a week and it will be higher if any penalty rates apply.


Employers say the hike could lead to the closure of some businesses with the Accommodation Association of Australia saying regional tourism operators will be hit hard.


Will Creedon from Visitor Economy Hunter says its just another expense tourism operators will have to take on.


“Every increase of the expenses that is unforseen, brings more risk, brings uncertainty and it brings lack of confidence and there is no question again this week by this that it is another challenge,” he said.


Mr Creedon says it is already a difficult market and this is just another challenge.


“Tourism in the Hunter, particularly mid week business and some weekend business, has been under considerable hardship in relation to the expenses and this is just another expense and unfortunately we are competing against the cost structure of other countries like Fiji, Hawaii, etc,” he said.

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