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When you get up to work tomorrow, you're likely to be heading into a week that will earn you $619 less than the average Australian.

The latest wage figures in Australia show those across the Tasman earn an average NZ$1574 a week - an increase of 5.9 per cent over the year. In New Zealand, the average wage is $955.

The news is little surprise to Kiwis Carrey and Tommy Simons, who moved to the Gold Coast with their two young children three years ago.

The family was nervous about the change but Carrey says they haven't looked back.

"Our main reason for moving was the lifestyle," says the Carrey, 27.

"The weather is a big part of it - we were just so sick of the cold and the kids being stuck inside all winter - and the money was another one.

"We'd heard that the opportunities were a lot better. Things cost less and you make more."

Tommy, 28, was earning $550 a week working "ridiculous" hours as a baker in Christchurch, a job he had been in for 15 years.

Carrey estimates the family is at least $250 better off each week than they were in New Zealand.

"And petrol prices and food prices are lower too. It's all those little things that add up and make such a difference."

Recruitment specialist Hamish McLean said New Zealand couldn't compete with Australia in terms of salaries.

"It is tough," said McLean, who recruits for the engineering and construction industry. "Australian companies can offer salaries up to $50,000 to $70,000 higher than what you get here."

McLean said the result was a shortage of intermediate-level Kiwi workers.

Last year the Don Brash-led Taskforce 2025 set the aim of "catching up" with Australia in the next 15 years with controversial policies including slashing government spending, lowering the top tax rate and privatising state-owned enterprises.

Prime Minister John Key rejected most of the recommendations as too radical.

But Brash, who spoke at the Act Party's annual conference in Wellington yesterday, said although it was a "substantial challenge", he retained hope the gap could be closed.

"The Prime Minister has repeatedly confirmed that catching Australia is in fact the Government's objective. While it isn't clear how we will do that, it's fair to say the Government has started to make some moves in the right direction. Is it enough at that point? No."