Boris Johnson: Public sector pay rises can happen "without causing fiscal pressures"

Catherine Neilan
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The State Opening Of Parliament 2017
Boris Johnson: Sources indicate he backs the pay cap scrap (Source: Getty)

Boris Johnson has become the latest high profile Tory to defy Theresa May over the public sector pay cap.

The foreign secretary is thought to be backing a rise above the one per cent increase for those working in the public sector, with a source telling Sky News that he "strongly believes the rises can be done in a responsible way and without causing fiscal pressures".

The MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip "supports the idea of public sector workers getting a better pay deal and believes the pay review recommendations are right," the source added.

Yesterday environment secretary Michael Gove said the government should "listen to the pay review bodies who govern each individual area of public sector pay,".

It is thought health secretary Jeremy Hunt and education secretary Justine Greening are hoping to scrap the cap for their respective sectors, as wages fall behind inflation. Last week Labour attempted to scrap the one per cent cap, but was defeated in Parliament.

Last month, inflation rose to a four-year high of 2.9 per cent, prompting a hit to the UK's already-shaky consumer confidence. The Institute of Fiscal Studies estimates that a public sector pay rise in line with inflation would cost the Treasury £5.3bn, of which £1.6bn would be for the NHS.

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