HC Deb 22 March 2001 vol 365 cc303-4W
24. Mr. Ernie Ross

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of how the increased national minimum wage will benefit people in Scotland. [153655]

Mr. Alan Johnson

We estimate that the increase in the national minimum wage to £4.10 from 1 October 2001 will be of direct benefit to around 120,000 workers in Scotland-6.1 per cent. of all workers in Scotland.

Between April 2000 and February 2001, Inland Revenue enforcement officers visited 363 employers in Scotland and identified around £212,000 in underpayments for workers in Scotland.

The Low Pay Commission's third report, which the Government published on 5 March, contains a thorough assessment of the impact of the national minimum wage thus far and of the likely impact of this increase. Copies of the report have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Mr. Alexander

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what recent representations he has received on the implementation of the national minimum wage. [154289]

Mr. Alan Johnson

Earlier this month the independent Low Pay Commission produced volume 1 of their third report evaluating the impact of the national minimum wage. The Commission undertook an extensive consultation exercise as part of their work. They received 150 written submissions and took oral evidence from the CBI, the TUC and a number of other organisations to supplement their written evidence. Volume 2 of the third report, which will cover issues of implementation and enforcement, is due in May.