Dáil debates

Friday, 10 December 2010

Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest (No. 2) Bill 2010: Second Stage (Resumed)

 

10:30 am

Photo of Brian Lenihan JnrBrian Lenihan Jnr (Minister, Department of Finance; Dublin West, Fianna Fail)

-----but, of course, this is not the case. It means the evidence shows that if the rate had not been increased, we could expect that employment opportunities would be greater.

The effects of a high minimum wage are wide-ranging. It is a barrier to employment in labour-intensive sectors like retailing, hospitality and tourism, where many jobs have been lost. If Ireland is to deal with the unemployment problem, these are precisely the sectors which must be encouraged to create jobs. In particular, I want to underline that a high minimum wage can be real barrier to young and less skilled people getting jobs in these sectors. The House will be aware the unemployment rate for those aged between 20 and 24 is nearly 25%.

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