UK - The government would consider forcing people to save into a pension plan if the voluntary route failed, Labour Party conference delegates heard.
Economic secretary to the Treasury Ruth Kelly told a fringe meeting that it was vital people saved more for their future and hoped this could be achieved through a campaign of education and persuasion.
But Kelly warned that if workers would not save voluntarily then the government would have to consider compulsion.
She added that moves towards compulsion would be examined by the independent Pensions Commission – which would report after the next general election.
Chancellor Gordon Brown confirmed that legislation would be introduced to establish a pension protection fund.
Brown said: “In future every worker contributing to a pension will have their pension protected and be guaranteed their pension rights.”
And deputy prime minister John Prescott hit out against massive council tax hikes – needed, in part, to fund soaring council pension deficits of £30bn.
He warned that councils which try to get away with 50% increases in future could be capped.
Prescott noted: “I did retain reserve capping powers and I will, if necessary, use them in a targeted way on those councils that make unreasonably large council tax rises.”
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