The AM Show sports reader Mark Richardson is adamant New Zealand needs "low paying" jobs for its economy.
Richardson and The AM Show panel were discussing Friday morning's poll which asked listeners if they'd had a pay rise this year.
It's been forecast that the 2020 election will provide financial growth for certain segments of the New Zealand jobs market.
But Richardson said he "believed in the importance" of low-paid jobs.
"I think an economy needs a certain amount of low-paying jobs," Richardson said on Friday.
"You need people to do the work that [actually] needs to have low overheads.
"Everyone is bitching and moaning about not being able to afford a house, well you know why? It's because - your builder's apprentice is getting paid more now, your plumber's mate is getting paid more now, the bloke who's pushing the logs through the mill is getting paid more now."
Richardson then said people should "work hard, be good, be ambitious and work your way up the ladder".
Asked by host Duncan Garner if he would pay the living wage to everyone in New Zealand Richardson said, "I don't know if we can afford to".
"You do have jobs in the country that need to be done and unfortunately they need to be low-paying jobs," he said.
Garner said he "didn't disagree" with Richardson.
"It's called growing up and getting somewhere," Garner said.