SFA warns against minimum wage rise

18th July 2016 | News

The Small Firms Association (SFA) fears an increase in the national minimum wage would place additional cost pressures on small businesses amid the outcome of the recent EU referendum.

The Low Pay Commission will present its report to Government this week on any increase in the national minimum wage, which currently stands at €9.15 an hour.

The SFA is the trusted partner of over 8,500 small businesses across the country, with a vision of Ireland as the most vibrant small business community in the world; supporting entrepreneurship, valuing small business and rewarding risk takers.

Linda Barry, acting director, SFA, believes the prospect of Brexit should serve as “a wake-up call” to the Government.

“Competitiveness is crucial if small businesses are to withstand the impact of the vote,” said Barry.

“Now is the time for action to enhance the Irish business environment, not to create additional pressures for businesses.”

Ms Barry added that SFA members have pinpointed wage inflation as the biggest threat to their businesses in the next 12 months.

“There are many factors currently influencing the Irish economy that we have little or no domestic control over – exchange rates, the future trading relationship between the UK and the EU, oil prices and interest rates, to name but a few,” added Barry.

“If the 200,000 small businesses in Ireland are to continue to create and maintain jobs and to operate in our cities, towns and villages, it is crucial that the Government is proactive on those elements within its control.

“It is vital that Ireland reacts proactively to the Brexit vote by boosting our competitive offering.”