Andaya said the government already has the money to implement a wage hike for its employees. The last time there was a salary increase was in 2001.
Government workers will get pay increases starting 2007 after the Arroyo administration allotted a total of P172.3 billion to cover annual increases until 2010.
The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) was earlier reported as saying that the government will spend P10.3 billion in 2007, P32.1 billion in 2008, P55 billion in 2009, and P74.9 billion in 2010 for the salary increases.
Based on what he called a benchmarking study recently conducted by the (DBM) and the Civil Service Commission (CSC), Andaya said they found out that government employees with a salary grade of 11 (earning a basic salary of P11,000), or higher, have a wide salary differential compared with their counterparts in the private sector.
Andaya said the government wants to keep public sector employees' pay to be at par to prevent them from being lured away by private companies.
Congress is yet to pass a salary standardization scheme to back the pay hike. But he clarified there would be no across-the-board increases for all state workers.
"Contrary to common notion, the rank and file of the government's employees are paid with salaries at par with their counterparts in the private sector," he said.
"But they would still get increases, but not as much as those with higher salary grade levels," he told MindaNews. "That (across-the-board scheme) would distort salary standards," he added.
The national government employs more than a million employees. There are about 400,000 local government workers and almost 100,000 employees on the payroll of government corporations.
Andaya said they have scheduled to start the increase in July to avoid any complication arising from the 2007 elections.