§ Mr. Clelland
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many people in(a) Newcastle upon Tyne and (b) Gateshead have benefited from the introduction of the national minimum wage; and what was the average uplift on earnings. 
§ Alan Johnson
We do not have information on numbers of national minimum wage (NMW) beneficiaries specific to Newcastle upon Tyne or Gateshead. For the north-east region as a whole, it is thought that around 80,000 people should have benefited from the introduction of the NMW in April 1999. The number who should have benefited from the NMW uprating in October 2001 is estimated to be 110,000.
In spring 1998, prior to the introduction of the NMW, the average wage for full-time employees on adult rates in Newcastle upon Tyne was £336.9 and in Gateshead it was £352.5. In spring 2002 the average wage in Newcastle was £409.9, an increase of nearly 22 per cent., and in Gateshead it had risen to £389.4, an increase of 10.5 per cent. over the period. Over the same period the average wage for the north east as a whole increased by nearly 18 per cent., to £399.3, and for Great Britain by 21 per cent., to £464.7.