Budget glass half full and glass half empty for workplace pensions
24 March 2010
Commenting on today’s Budget, National Association of Pension Funds Chief Executive Joanne Segars said:
“This is a Budget which is a glass half full and a glass half empty for workplace pensions.
“We are pleased the Government has responded to NAPF pressure to skew gilt issuance to the long-dated and index-linked end. This will help pension funds reduce their deficits, scheme sponsors reduce their liabilities and is good news for all those saving into a pension.
“However, the Government should have gone further and abandoned its damaging pensions tax plans for higher earners which will only serve to weaken pension provision for all. The NAPF has put forward a fairer, simpler and more workable alternative. There is still time for the Government to reconsider and we urge it to do so.”
Commenting on further pension issues, Joanne Segars also said:
Small Pension Pots
“We welcome the news that the Government is encouraging proposals to
give pensions savers with small pots, especially couples, so they get better
value for money.
“The Government has missed an opportunity to encourage pensions that
share the risk between employers and their employees. While clarifying the
limited options currently available to employers is helpful, we need a bolder
approach if we are to maintain defined benefit provision.
Public Sector Pensions
“The Government has said it plans further reform of public sector pensions.
We advocate establishing an independent Public Sector Pensions
Commission to ensure there is a well-informed debate on the issue.”
Green Investment Bank
“NAPF members would welcome a broadening of the range of investments
available to them through the new Green Investment Bank and we look
forward to the further detail promised for the summer.
“As long-term investors with a responsibility to ensure pension payments
over many decades, pension funds have an interest in such investments –
especially as they provide a socially useful purpose, too.”
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