George Osborne has frozen public sector pay awards at 1% per year for the next four years in a move that could anger some of the UK's trade unions.
The chancellor, as part of his post-election emergency budget, extended the cap after first freezing Whitehall salaries in 2011. The top Tory announced the measure despite MPs being set to secure a 10% wage increase from £67,070 ($103,063) to £74,000 in 2015.
Labour MP Ian Lavery, who is also a former president of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), claimed Osborne was "robbing" public sector workers with the remuneration reform and dubbed the decision as "highly provocative".
The coalition government faced industrial action from members of unions like the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) over its public sector pay freeze move and Osborne risks more strikes after his latest announcement.
"Osborne hypocritically talks about cutting tax credits to increase wages while the last government cut living standards for civil servants by up to 20% and he now plans four more years of pay caps," said Mark Serwotka, the general secretary of the PCS union.
"It is sickening to see Tory MPs braying and cheering while the chancellor rewards the wealthy and punishes the poor."
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