NAPF calls for greater focus on savers not voters through creation of independent retirement savings commission | Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association

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NAPF calls for greater focus on savers not voters through creation of independent retirement savings commission

16 October 2014

NAPF’s pre-election Manifesto launches at the NAPF Annual Conference 2014

The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has urged the next Government to put the long term interests of savers at the heart of pensions policy through the creation of an Independent Retirement Savings Commission (IRSC) that will oversee future pensions legislation.

This is among the NAPF’s six priorities for the next Parliament in the NAPF’s pre-General Election Manifesto – Pension Possibilities – launching today (Thursday) at the NAPF Annual Conference 2014.

The NAPF’s six recommendations to Government are:

  • Commit to the continued rollout of automatic enrolment
  • Plan for the long term through an Independent Retirement Savings Commission
  • Enable pension schemes to be effective investors in the economy
  • Manage European legislation
  • Drive higher standards of governance and reduce tick-box regulation
  • Supplement the Guidance Guarantee and monitor people’s outcomes after using guidance

Download the NAPF’s Manifesto, Pension Possibilities here .

Commenting on the Manifesto, Joanne Segars, Chief Executive, NAPF, said:

“The last five years have seen great progress in the world of pensions. Automatic enrolment has brought over four million people into workplace pensions. State pension reforms have given clarity on what people can expect in their retirement from government. Large schemes acting in members’ interests have continued to bring down costs and increase value. And the 2014 Budget reforms promise people more flexibility in how they use their retirement savings.

“We now have an opportunity to build on these changes and develop a pension system on which millions of people can depend. To do this, Government and industry must work in partnership. Our manifesto sets out the six recommendations for the next Government to help us achieve this.”

On the call for an Independent Retirement Savings Commission, Joanne Segars added:

“Ensuring the long term interests of savers, not the short term interests of politicians , are at the heart of pensions policy must be the priority of the next Parliament. This last year has been characterised by swathes of legislation that pension schemes now have to implement to a very tight deadline. It is vital for the long term interests of pension savers’ ultimate retirement outcomes that future changes in pensions policy are carefully thought out and implemented, which is why we need an Independent Retirement Savings Commission to focus on the long term and protect the interests of all savers.”

Pension reforms 2014

Looking more closely at the most recent reforms, the Budget 2014 changes offer pension savers much greater freedom and choice in how they use their savings in retirement. The Government’s Guidance Service from April 2015 will offer some help to savers as they approach retirement, but savers need to be equipped to make retirement decisions well in advance of retirement and to ensure they make those decisions fully informed of the benefits and the risks of the  options available.

Joanne Segars, commented:

“As this Government’s agenda for Freedom & Choice rolls out from April next year it is imperative the Government monitors very closely the Guidance Service and any new products that are introduced to the market. To build on the Guidance Service there should also be a broader education programme that pension savers benefit from throughout their working and saving life. The Government has a responsibility to consider how a third party funding model, similar to that used to deliver debt advice, could be used to offer an improved education programme to help people plan their retirement.”

The NAPF’s Manifesto − Pension Possibilities − will be launched at the NAPF Annual Conference: A 2020 vision for pensions, in Liverpool on Thursday 16 October 2014.

The NAPF is also launching a major research series – Understanding Retirement – examining the nature of retirement for those recently retired and those coming up to retirement in the next 15-20 years.

Download the NAPF’s Manifesto, Pension Possibilities here .

-ENDS-

 

Notes to editors:

The NAPF is the voice of workplace pensions in the UK. We speak for over 1,300 pension schemes that provide pensions for over 17 million people and have more than £900 billion of assets. We also have 400 members from businesses supporting the pensions sector.

We aim to help everyone get more out of their retirement savings. To do this we spread best practice among our members, challenge regulation where it adds more cost than benefit and promote policies that add value for savers.

Contacts:

Lucy Grubb, Head of Media and PR, NAPF, 020 7601 1726 or 07713 073023, [email protected]

Eleanor Bennett, Press Officer, NAPF, 020 7601 1718 or 07825 171 446, [email protected]