The Employers Forum on Age (EFA) is calling on the government to scrap the lower development rate paid to 18 to 21-year-old workers in order to equalise the minimum wage.

According to the organisation, paying younger workers less than their older colleagues even though, in many cases, they are carrying out the same job is unfair.

Currently, workers aged 22 and over are entitled to at least £5.73 per hour, while the minimum rate of pay for 18 to 21-year-olds is just £4.77 per hour.

Commenting, Catharine Pusey, director of the Employers Forum on Age, asked: "Why then do we think it is right to pay someone less simply because they are younger?"

It has been argued that scrapping the lower development rate would result in higher unemployment among 18 to 21-year-olds.

However, Ms Pusey insisted such a move would have "minimal negative impacts" and that in the long-term it would in fact be very positive.

Under-18s who are no longer of compulsory school age are currently entitled to at least £3.53 per hour.