New Minimum Wage Rate and New Rate for Apprentices

The Government has confirmed that it has accepted the recommendations from the Low Pay Commission (LPC) on the new rates for the National Minimum Wage, as referred to in yesterday’s Budget. The new rates, which will come into force on 1 October 2010 will be:

  • £5.93 per hour for low paid workers aged 21 and over (a 2.2% increase on the current £5.80 rate);
  • £4.92 per hour for 18-20 year olds (a 1.9% increase on the current £4.83 rate); and
  • £3.64 per hour for 16-17 year olds (a 2% increase on the current £3.57 rate.

The Government also announced that it had accepted the LPC’s recommendation to introduce an apprentice minimum wage of £2.50 per hour. The new rate will apply to those apprentices who are under 19 or those that are aged 19 and over but in the first year of their apprenticeship.

Business Minister Pat McFadden said:

“Since the National Minimum Wage was introduced millions of low paid workers across the country have benefited by having their wages increased.”

“The Low Pay Commission, which includes employers and Trade Union representatives, carefully considered the latest economic data and evidence before making its recommendations, balancing the needs of businesses and workers.”

“Today’s recommendations provide a welcome increase for workers, but the economy is still fragile and government must continue to support the recovery in the months ahead.”

“I’m also glad to see the LPC recognising the significant contribution that apprentices make to the economy. I hope this will encourage more people to take advantage of this opportunity and invest in their skills by taking up an apprenticeship.”

Low Pay Commission Chairman David Norgrove said:

“We are pleased that the Government has again accepted the Commission’s recommendations. The introduction of an apprentice rate marks an important extension to minimum wage protection across the UK.”

The Government also published its strategy for ensuring compliance with National Minimum Wage legislation over the next three to five years. The strategy builds on the last 10 years and sets out the Government’s priorities for ensuring that workers receive the wages they are entitled to.

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