- National living wage will rise from £8.21 to £8.72, according to announcement
- This will mean low-paid workers will receive a 6.2 per cent pay increase
- The pay rise will form part of the Prime Minister’s pledge to ‘level up’ the country
Nearly three million people will receive a pay rise when the minimum wage is increased next year, the Treasury said yesterday.
Low-paid workers will receive a 6.2 per cent pay increase when the national living wage rises from £8.21 to £8.72, according to the announcement.
The pay rise will form part of the Prime Minister’s pledge to ‘level up’ the country and improve living standards for new Tory voters in the North and the Midlands.
It came as figures showed that the UK jobs market improved in the last decade, breaking 21 employment rate records, the Department for Work and Pensions said.
The last decade of Tory rule has also seen a record number of women in work, a record high ethnic minority employment rate and a record number of people in full-time employment, it said.
Announcing the introduction of a higher minimum wage yesterday, the Treasury said that the annual pay rise will equate to £920 for a full- time worker.
The new rate – the biggest cash increase ever – will apply to the over-25s and start on April 1 next year. At present, the minimum wage is £7.70 for those over 21, rising to £8.21 an hour for over-25s.
It will benefit 2.8million workers, according to estimates from the independent Low Pay Commission.
Younger workers who receive the National Minimum Wage will also see their pay boosted with increases of between 4.6 and 6.5 per cent, dependant on age. Meanwhile, 21- to 24- year-olds can look forward to a 6.5 per cent increase from £7.70 to £8.20 an hour.
The announcement is in line with plans to hike the minimum wage for all employees aged 21 or over to £10.50 an hour by 2024 which were unveiled earlier this year.
PM Boris Johnson said: ‘Hard work should always pay, but for too long, people haven’t seen the pay rises they deserve. Our Government will put a stop to that, giving nearly three million people from Edinburgh to Eastbourne a well-earned pay rise, including the biggest ever cash boost to the National Living Wage.’
Chancellor Sajid Javid added: ‘This latest rise will mean that since we introduced the National Living Wage in 2016, the lowest paid will have had a wage increase of more than £3,600.’
The minimum wage pledge was announced during Tory conference after Mr Javid proclaimed the Tories as ‘the party of the workers’.
Mr Javid said his ‘ambitious’ proposal, which will be phased in over five years, would see four million workers paid an average of £4,000 more a year compared to now – at a cost of £16billion to employers.
The DWP yesterday claimed that 21 employment records have been broken in the past decade. There is a record high for the number of people in work, as well as for employment rates for women, workers over 50 and ethnic minorities, the department said.
Female unemployment is at a record low, as is the youth unemployment rate, it said.
The economic inactivity rate also hit a record low, it added. Yesterday, the Department for Business also claimed that the energy price cap had saved 11million customers £1billion on bills last year.
However, the figures – released a year after the cap was introduced under Theresa May – are disputed by industry experts.
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