Government abolishes public sector pay cap

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The Government is scrapping the public sector pay cap which has limited rises to a maximum of 1% for the past seven years.

The announcement came as ministers approved an average 1.7% rise for prison officers and improvements for police pay totalling 2% for 2017/18.

From 2018/19, the Government will be ready to show "flexibility" in areas where there is evidence of problems with recruitment, retention and skills shortages, said Prime Minister Theresa May's official spokesman.

Asked whether the introduction of flexibility in pay settlements meant that the cap was over, the spokesman said: "The answer is yes."