HALIFAX -- New Brunswickers earning minimum wage will be making a little bit more as of April 1.

In a news release on Tuesday, the Government of New Brunswick says minimum wage will increase five cents per hour effective April 1, bringing it to $11.75. The province's current minimum wage rate is $11.70 per hour.

The minimum wage rate is indexed to New Brunswick's consumer price index, rounded to the nearest five cents.

The New Brunswick consumer price index grew by 0.22 per cent in 2020.

“Protecting the purchasing power of employees, who help keep New Brunswick businesses in operation, is one reason for tying minimum wage increases to the consumer price index,” said Trevor Holder, the province's post-secondary education, training and labour minister. “At the same time, it ensures predictability for businesses. We are mindful of the financial realities faced by both employees and employers, particularly as we endure the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Government officials say New Brunswick currently has about 20,000 minimum wage earners, which makes up about six per cent of the paid workforce in the province.