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  Salaries_

During 1999 some 44,000 new jobs were created and there were around half this many during 2000.

Executive salaries vary across the market however as a guide a middle / senior executive employed in an accounting / sales / engineering field could expect to earn between $60,000 and $100,000 per annum plus benefits. Benefits generally include subsidised superannuation, medical insurance and in many cases use of a company car or an allowance for an employee supplied vehicle. Nurses and teachers with 10 years experience could expect earnings of $35,000 to $45,000 per annum. People in the trades or technical fields can expect earnings of around $35,000 -$40,000 before taxation .

New Zealand salaries and wages are not high by international standards, however they are at a level where middle executives enjoy a pleasant life style. The average wage is $34,000. Where a gross household income is $80,000 or more that household is in the top 5 % of income earners.

The minimum wage is $7.50 per hour or $300.00 per week. There is a minimum youth rate which must be paid to all young people under the age of 20. The youth rate is $3.75 per hour. We would comment that less than 3% of the population are employed at these levels and those that are work in unskilled areas. By December 1999 the average male earned $18.73 per hour and the average female $15.98. There were around 1.8 million people in full or part-time work.

The Employment Contracts Act legislation that was enacted in 1991 was considered to be both radical and innovative in terms of labour law. The Act governs the employment of all workers in New Zealand, however there are a number of other statutes which also impact on conditions of employment.

The Act required all employees and employers to have contracts with each other. By July 2000 the new Centre Left Government will have repealed this Act and replaced it with the Employment Relations Act. This new Act introduces the concept of “good faith bargaining” (try testing that concept in a Court of Law!!), unions as the only allowed bargaining agents for collective contracts and one or two other changes which will likely change nothing at all!

The contracts must contain a number of key clauses. These include:

a procedure for personal grievances

a disputes procedure

a term, with an expiry date for collective agreements

wages, hours of work, holidays, sick leave entitlements.


The Law sets the minimum for annual leave, sick leave, statutory holidays, minimum wages etc., it is up to the employee to negotiate better conditions than the minimum.

Sex, marital status, religion, age, disabilities cannot be discriminated against, and strict laws enforce this.

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Taxation In New Zealand:

Personal Income Tax Rates

First $ 38 400.00 19.5% 
$38 400.00 to $ 59 000.00 33% > $ 60 000.00 39% 

Company Tax Rates

Not surprisingly those self employed that can register as companies now are. Prior to 1 April 2000 the top marginal tax rate was 33% (equal to the company tax rate).

All worldwide income is taxable whether your funds/capital and investments are held in New Zealand or elsewhere. There are penalties for those not declaring offshore income if the Tax Department catches you. However where New Zealand has a double tax agreement you will receive a tax credit on the tax paid at source and you will not pay tax a second time on it in New Zealand.

New Zealand operates a consumption tax on all goods and services consumed here. Called the Goods and Services tax it is levied on everything (except private house sales and financial services) at a rate of 12.5 %.

There are also a raft of less significant taxes such as fringe benefit, entertainment and ACC which we will not detail here. There is no capital gains tax.

Suffice it to say that Mr. and Mrs. Average New Zealander pay around 28 % of their income in either direct or indirect taxes. This is much lower than in most other developed countries.

To have a net income of $30000.00 per year means a gross household income of around $45 000.00. Here is a list of occupations and what they might expect to earn per annum in 
New Zealand dollars.

Admin clerk 30,171
Receptionist/date entry/typist 28,321
Accounts clerk 29,359
Customer services clerk 30,323
Sales rep/commercial traveller 35,966
Accountant (1-5 yrs experience) 54,364
Accountant (qualified 5 yrs +) 68,752
Human Resources/Personnel Officer 46,448
Marketing/Business Development Manager 78,086
Production Supervisor 43,644
Production worker (semi skilled) 25,440
Machinist, apparel 22,000
Warehouse/Store person (unskilled) 21,789
General Manager (under 50 employees) 83,578
General Manager (50 - 199 employees) 101,567
Managing Director (50 - 199 employees) 127,513
Fitter Welder and Fitter Turner 36,819
Information Systems Manager 74,443

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System controller/Administrator 54,064
Analyst/Programmer and computer systems engineer 52,932
Information Services Officer and computer operator 37,973
Software Engineer 55,378
Electronics technician 39,347
Library Manager/senior librarian/qualified librarian 45,415
Carpenter/Joiner 33,302
Civil Construction worker 30,460
Shop Manager (single outlet) 40,749
Salesperson (skilled) 24,375
Checkout operator 18,426
Driver (general road transport) 28,552
Home Assistant 23501
Staff nurse/Registered Nurse 39,468
Nurse aide/Hospital aide 24,236
Cook 28,280
Kitchenhand 20,029


Minimum Wage Rates_

In New Zealand you are entitled to at least the minimum wage if you are 16 years old or over. The minimum wage rates (NZ$ per hour before tax) is 4.20 for youth (16 - 19 years) and 7.00 for adults (20 years and over).

Average hourly earnings

By December 2000 the average male earned $18.73 per hour and the average female $15.98. There were around 1.8 million people in full or part-time work.

  • One NZ $ = Rs:23.33/- (approx.) on 1st June

  • Average Annual salaries by profession

Admin clerk

$30,171

Receptionist/date entry/typist

$28,321

Accounts clerk

$29,359

Customer services clerk

$30,323

Sales rep/commercial traveller

$35,966

Accountant (1-5 yrs experience)

$54,364

Accountant (qualified 5 yrs +)

$68,752

Human Resources/Personnel Officer

$46,448

Marketing/Business Development Manager

$78,086

Production Supervisor

$43,644

Production worker (semi skilled)

$25,440

Machinist, apparel

$22,000

Warehouse/Store person (unskilled)

$21,789

General Manager (under 50 employees)

$83,578

General Manager (50 - 199 employees)

$101,567

Managing Director (50 - 199 employees)

$127,513

Fitter Welder and Fitter Turner

$36,819

Information Systems Manager

$74,443

System controller/Administrator

$54,064

Analyst/Programmer and computer systems engineer

$52,932

Information Services Officer and computer operator

$37,973

Software Engineer

$55,378

Electronics technician

$39,347

Library Manager/senior librarian/qualified librarian

$45,415

Carpenter/Joiner

$33,302

Civil Construction worker

$30,460

Shop Manager (single outlet)

$40,749

Salesperson (skilled)

$24,375

Checkout operator

$18,426

Driver (general road transport)

$28,552

Home Assistant

$23501

Staff nurse/Registered Nurse

$39,468

Nurse aide/Hospital aide

$24,236

Cook

$28,280

Kitchenhand

$20,029

New Zealand Average Earnings

Average hourly earnings

$18.30

Private sector hourly earnings

$17.20

Public sector hourly earnings

$22.10

Male earnings

$19.60

Female earnings

$16.50

Average total weekly earnings

$698.40

Average weekly hours worked

38.20


Weekly Wages by Employment Sector

Accommodation / cafes / restaurants

$450

Retail

$469

Personal Services

$643

Health and community services

$656

Cultural and recreation services

$659

Construction

$706

Transport / storage / communication

$723

Manufacturing

$731

Forestry and mining

$755

Education

$757

Wholesale trade

$773

Property and business services

$782

Government administration and defence

$876

Finance and insurance

$932

Electricity, gas and water

$978

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