Miliband to unveil Labour's minimum wage plans

Opposition leader Ed Miliband is due to announce plans to link minimum wage to average earnings today.

Speaking at an event revealing the results of the Buckle report, a study into low pay by former KPMG International deputy chairman Alan Buckle, Miliband will propose basing the minimum wage on median hourly salaries. 

In the current system, minimum wage is based on the economy's health in any given year, limited by the amount the treasury believes the Government can afford. The figure currently stands at 54.6%, but both the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives have suggested they would raise this if re-elected next year. 

Labour will not announce the exact figures until nearer the election, but it is expected to follow recommendations from the Resolution Foundation report and set the figure at 60% of median earnings. 

George Osborne has previously stated plans to set the minimum wage at £7 per hour, or 57% of the median wage. 

Talking to a group of party activists, Miliband will warn that workers on minimum wage must not "be left behind", adding that Britain is "one of the lowest paid countries in the advanced economies".

Other suggestions from the Buckle report include a complete overhaul of the Low Pay Commission (LPC), to include a wider remit of tackling poverty in the UK and increasing productivity. 

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has criticised the proposals, with chief policy director Katja Hall warning against "interference" from Labour. 

"The minimum wage was introduced by a Labour Government and it has widespread support from political parties and employers," she said. "Let's not jeopardise that. Let's trust the Low Pay Commission to do its job."