UK - Treasury opposition has pushed publication of Alan Pickering's Simplification Review back to late July "at the earliest", according to industry sources.
Treasury objections to key Pickering proposals have caused the Department for Work and Pensions to miss its own internal deadlines for completing the review. A final draft of the Pickering review was handed to the DWP on May 28.
A leading pensions manager said: “The delay is probably because Alan Pickering is digging his heels in and the Treasury is trying to reach some sort of compromise that suits both sides – a compromise that will be no easier now there is a Treasury ally [Andrew Smith] heading up the DWP.”
He believed the Treasury was trying to dilute the proposals because of their revenue implications.
One of the key proposals that may be facing Treasury opposition is a proposal to remove the earnings cap on occupational pensions.
The measure is aimed at increasing company directors’ commitment to the pension funds they sponsor, but will hit Treasury tax revenues.
Pickering has himself revealed little about what will be in his review – only disclosing the broadest of outlines to the NAPF conference last month.
He said then that the review would concentrate on:
- Significantly reducing the level of prescriptive legislation.- Increasing the level of communication between pension schemes and their members.- Giving employers more control over the design of pension plans.Making the role of trustees more rewarding.
This week's top stories included Cardano announcing plans to acquire Now Pensions from a Dutch pension fund later this year.
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) faces a £102m impact on liabilities as a result of equalising guaranteed minimum pensions (GMPs), according to its annual results.
Malcolm Mclean says getting the channels of communication right and engaging more openly is a good starting point