The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) has today (Friday) submitted its response to the Government’s consultation on Superfunds.
The PLSA’s Defined Benefit (DB) Taskforce, set up in March 2016 to undertake a review of the challenges currently facing funded DB pension schemes, made a number recommendations to the Government to help ensure the sustainability of open DB schemes and help closed DB schemes run off more efficiently and ultimately secure member benefits, including a proposal to allow for the creation of superfunds.
In its response, the PLSA:
- Highlights that over 11 million savers across the UK are still reliant on DB schemes and despite an incredibly challenging decade, the majority of scheme members should receive their benefits in full. But, that a significant minority of schemes and employers face a harsher reality;
- Says Superfunds can provide a new option for underfunded schemes, to protect member benefits and create an incentive and achievable goal for employers to accelerate funding into their scheme(s);
- Supports proposals for strong Superfund governance and for those linked to a mandatory fit and proper persons requirement and welcomes the proposal to draw upon the supervisory regime for master trusts - which looks after the benefits of 10 million savers; and
- Argues Superfunds are closely supervised by the Pensions Regulator, and members protected by the Pension Protection Fund, as well as by a ‘ring-fenced’ capital buffer.
Joe Dabrowski, Head of DB, LGPS, and Standards, PLSA, said:
“These proposals provide a real opportunity to provide better outcomes for savers and to get more funding into schemes with weaker employers more quickly. Superfunds can provide schemes with a distinct new option, that addresses the binary nature of the current system, and keeps greater levels of member security out of the reach of very many schemes.
“We fully support DWP's proposals to establish a robust, secure and affordable regulatory regime, and are pleased to see the strong governance requirements of the new DC master trust regime, which looks after the benefits of 10 million savers, replicated for Superfunds.”
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