Shipping: Minimum Wage

Treasury written question – answered on 22 September 2023.

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Photo of Grahame Morris Grahame Morris Labour, Easington

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the press statement issued by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, published on 30 March 2022, if he will list the targeted enforcement activities that HMRC NMW Enforcement have carried out for seafarers employed in the (a) ferries and (b) wider shipping industry as of 15 September 2023; and what the outcomes of those investigations were.

Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

HMRC enforces the UK NMW and national living wage in line with the legislative framework owned by the Department for Business and Trade (DBT).

HMRC don’t hesitate to use their powers if they suspect a business isn’t paying their workers at least the correct rate of National Minimum Wage. HMRC deploy resource across all sectors proportionate to the level of risk.

Since the UK NMW changes for the maritime sector in October 2020, HMRC have worked with the domestic maritime sector and unions to ensure obligations and worker rights are understood and are being complied with. HMRC wrote to employers in the Maritime sector asking them to check that they are paying all their workers the correct minimum wage.

HMRC have produced multi-lingual leaflets for seafarers regarding their entitlement and routes of redress and these have been distributed via the RMT and Nautilus International unions. HMRC also provided an article on seafarer minimum wage entitlement published on Nautilus International website encouraging seafarers to make a complaint if they are not receiving National Minimum Wage.

Anyone who thinks they are not being paid what they are entitled to can complain online at or can contact ACAS, on 0300 123 1100. HMRC won’t tell an employer who complained without the person’s consent.

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