Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) officials yesterday briefed the legislature’s Finance Committee on the state of the economy and said civil servants would not get a pay raise this year, in part because of the possibility of an economic slowdown.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lin Te-fu (林德福) asked if the rise in consumer prices triggered by the increase in gas and electricity prices would affect the government’s anticipated 3.85 percent economic growth, and if the consumer’s price index (CPI) would exceed 2 percent.
Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics Minister Shih Su-mei (石素梅) said the 3.85 percent growth would hopefully be maintained throughout the year, but hikes in gas and electricity prices would have some impact on economic growth.
Since some revision to the economic growth figures in the first quarter would be required, we would lower that figure according, Shih said.
He also said that Premier Sean Chen (陳冲) had given clear orders for the administration to keep the CPI under 2 percent, adding that she was confident the government would be able to maintain that figure.
Lin asked if civil servants would be getting salary raises after Council of Labor Affairs Minister Jennifer Wang’s (王如玄) comments on Thursday last week that the minimum wage would be raised.
Saying that bureaucrats received a raise last year, Shih said another raise was not being considered, adding: “We would have to treat the issue of civil servant salary raises very carefully.”