A report by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) predicts hundreds of thousands of jobs will be cut over the next nine years as a result of a change in technology and increase in costs.
While made with good intentions, the national living wage rise and new apprenticeship levy could result in 900,000 fewer jobs by 2025 with 74,000 shops predicted to shut. However, it was suggested the jobs left would be more "productive and higher earning".
Chairman of the BRC, Sir Charlie Mayfield, said "What the National Living Wage does is that it increases the pace at which wages will rise - and by the way that's not a bad thing, it's in many ways a very good thing - but it will also probably accelerate some of the changes within the workforce and the responses that retailers make in order to mitigate some of the rising cost pressure that they're seeing.”
From April, the National Living Wage will be increasing to £7.20 per hour for workers over 25 years old.