I am pleased to announce that the Government have today written to the Low Pay Commission setting out the remit for its 2015 report.
The Government support the national minimum wage (NMW) because of the protection it provides to low-paid workers and the incentives to work it provides. Our aim is to have NMW rates that help as many low-paid workers as possible, while making sure that we do not damage their employment prospects.
The Low Pay Commission (LPC) is asked to:
Monitor, evaluate and review the levels of each of the different NMW rates and make recommendations on the levels it believes should apply from October 2015.
Consider whether any changes can be made to the apprentice rate:
to make the structure simpler and improve compliance; and
whether the structure and level of the apprentice rate should continue to be applied to all levels of apprenticeship, including higher levels.
Review the conditions that need to be in place to allow the value of the minimum wage to increase in real terms. This would include an update on their advice on the future path of the NMW.
In making recommendations in the areas set out above, the Low Pay Commission is asked to take account of the state of the economy, and employment and unemployment levels.
The LPC is asked to report to the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, and the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills as early as possible in February 2015.
Copies of the remit have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.