A bill allowing the Government to re-introduce a youth minimum wage is to be debated by Parliament.

The bill in the name of Act MP Sir Roger Douglas was drawn from a ballot of members' bills.

The last Government ditched youth rates and said the minimum wage should apply to all workers from 16 years-old.

Labour allowed for a new entrants' rate to employees aged 16 and 17, except for those who had completed 200 hours or three months of employment, and for a training minimum wage for workers aged 16 and over who were doing recognised industry training involving at least 60 credits a year.

The Government recently raised the minimum hourly wage by 25 cents to $12.75, despite a campaign by unions and Labour to lift it to $15.

Opponents of a minimum youth rate say it discourages employers hiring young people and lifts youth unemployment, supporters argue it is unfair to differentiate pay rates based on age and say there is little evidence of a link between youth rates and unemployment.

Youth unemployment soared in 2009 to over 20 per cent as the economy suffered from recession.

A spokesman for Labour Minister Kate Wilkinson said he did not believe the National caucus had formed a position on the bill.

Ms Wilkinson recently seemed interested in the idea when she was asked about youth rates and unemployment by Sir Roger in Parliament.

"The member may be aware that when Labour wanted to abolish the youth rate we did in fact vote against that legislation, for that very reason," she said.

"We were concerned that it would price young people off the job market, and that it might also be a perverse incentive for them to leave education. I say to the member who asked the question that we are always willing to listen to good ideas."

Sir Roger's bill has no chance of making progress through Parliament without the support of National.

Other bills drawn from the ballot were National MP Tau Henare's Employment Relations (Workers' Secret Ballot for Strikes) Amendment Bill and Green MP David Clendon's Smart Meters (Consumer Choice) Bill.

Mr Henare's bill legislates for secret ballots on strike action and Mr Clendon's bill gives effect to the recommendations of the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment in her report Smart electricity meters.

It requires all meters to control loads and to talk to smart appliances to give consumers the choice to have real-time information about their electricity use and variable tariffs.

- NZPA