Commenting on the Prime Minister's announcement in Parliament today, that the national minimum wage will rise to £5.73p an hour from October, Chris Hannant, Head of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce, said:“It is reassuring for employers that the national minimum wage will not increase above average earnings. As we move into more uncertain economic times and credit is squeezed, businesses, particularly smaller enterprises, will be operating on tighter margins. It’s important that the Low Pay Commission ensures fair pay, but it must continue to balance this against the ability of employers to cope with the additional financial burden.”