WORKERS on the minimum wage of €8.50 per hour look set for an increase in next autumn's Budget.
Tanaiste Joan Burton yesterday said the new Low Pay Commission will be set up in the next few weeks and should deliver its findings by next July. The Taoiseach has already given an undertaking that Government will accept the commission's findings - and last night one well-placed source signalled that an announcement may well be part of next October's Budget.
"The Government expect to get the report in July and will then consider its recommendations. That makes the Budget period the most likely time for an announcement," the source told the Irish Independent.
Ms Burton, who is also the Social Protection Minister, said that with the reduction in unemployment, there would have to be a renewed focus on low pay and poor conditions of employment.
She said the Government will be examining the issue of "zero-hour contracts".