31 March 2023
At a meeting of the Executive Council on 21 March 2023, an increase to the Minimum Wage of 28p per hour was approved.
This will take effect from 01 July 2023. When it does, the Minimum Wage will increase to £3.65 for persons over 18 and £2.70 for persons aged 16 or 17.
The approval of this is in line with the Minimum Wage Policy of 2021. This policy sets out the principles for establishing a longer-term path to a more ambitious Minimum Wage, benefitting workers and providing adequate time for businesses to plan and adapt. The Minimum Wage Policy is available on the SHG website at www.sainthelena.gov.sh/government/public-information/.
This year’s increase follows previous consultations between the Employment Rights Committee and employers, employees and other relevant stakeholders, such as charities and the Chamber of Commerce. These consultations informed a target Minimum Wage and proposed a timetable for achieving that target over the next 3-7 years. Additional consultation then took place in early 2023 with the Chamber of Commerce.
Although it varies for different types of people based on their circumstances, the current average Minimum Income Standard is considered to be just under £4.00 per hour. The Minimum Income Standard is the income level that allows a person reach a socially acceptable minimum standard of living. The target Minimum Wage level for 2024/25 has therefore been set at £4.00 per hour.
Although a target Minimum Wage level and timetable were published in 2021, when determining whether to increase the Minimum Wage level this year, consideration was given to the current cost of living pressures on both employees and employers. The Minimum Wage Policy recognises that there is a limit to the size of increases that businesses can absorb in a single year, whilst at the same time establishing a clear pathway for raising the minimum income level in St Helena.
Since its publication in 2013, the Minimum Wage has been raised from £2.30 to £3.65 for persons over 18, and from £1.45 to £2.70 for persons aged 16 or 17. This is equal to a 58% and 86% rise respectively.
In addition, in August 2022 a number of policy measures were announced that were intended to relieve some of the cost of living pressures being experienced due to the increased level of inflation. These are currently being reviewed to assess what impact they have had over the last nine months, with consideration being given as to whether they, or any other measures, could be effectively implemented in the next financial year to help limit the impact of ongoing inflationary pressures.
31 March 2023