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Unions dismayed at wage move

UNIONS yesterday voiced dismay at reports that the Prime Minister has decided to support a watering down of one of the key recommendations on a minimum wage.

Tony Blair is thought to have backed the Chancellor who believes the recommended rate of pounds 3.20 an hour for 18- to 21-year-olds should be cut to pounds 3 an hour.

The Chancellor is believed to be worried about the impact of a minimum wage on the Government's flagship New Deal jobs programme.