AWB Abolition Necessary and Correct, Says NFU24 December 2012
UK - Government plans to abolish the Agricultural Wages Board (AWB) from October 2013 are right and proper and will benefit agriculture, according to the National Farmers Union (NFU).
The decision comes following a Government consultation and was confirmed when plans to close the AWB down were included in a Bill in Parliament this week.
The NFU has consistently called for the abolition of the AWB, which has become increasingly obsolete, generating an additional administrative burden and forcing a one-size-fits-all approach on the industry.
NFU Deputy President Meurig Raymond said: “We are delighted with the decision to abolish the outdated AWB, and would like to praise the Minister for acting decisively on a consultation that generated passionate responses from all sides of the argument.
“The AWB, while appropriate in the era it was established, has now been superseded by modern-day developments such as the national minimum wage, leaving agriculture totally out of step with the rest of the UK workforce. This makes the decision to abolish it right and proper, and will bring agriculture alongside other modern-day industries.
“While we understand the changes need parliamentary approval, we welcome the intention to see the agricultural minimum wages regime abolished from October 2013, therefore ruling out a further round of wage negotiations. However, this does mean that members should comply with the order until that time, to ensure they continue to operate within the law.
“For the NFU, the next phase of work begins. We have committed to provide information and guidance to the industry to support wage negotiations between individual businesses and their workers in the future. We’ll be working with our members and stakeholders in the new year to progress this pledge.”
TheCattleSite News Desk