Minimum wage in United Kingdom increases to £5.05

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Saturday, October 1, 2005

From Saturday, the minimum wage (in the United Kingdom) will be increased to £5.05 (approximately $8.94 USD) which will affect more than a million workers. People aged between 18 and 21 will have a 15p increase to £4.25. Over 21s will be able to get at least £5.05 an hour, up from £4.85.

According to the Low Pay Commission the number of jobs had grown since the minimum wage was introduced in 1999 and so a further increase was necessary. "The increase will see well over a million low-paid workers with more cash in their pockets, many of them women working part-time," Brendan Barber, TUC general secretary, said. "But, as ever, with each minimum wage increase comes the predictable wave of protests from business saying that it cannot afford another rise."

Further increases are expected to happen sometime in the future. In October 2006 the government said an increase for adults should be put to £5.35 and £4.45 for 18-21 year olds. This would have a "serious impact" according to Sir Digby Jones. "The UK is already edging towards the top of the international minimum wage league table."