UK - The Church of England paid an additional £8.1m towards clergy pensions to help parishes cope with their final salary obligations in 2002.
The move follows donations of £7.1m in 2001 that were paid into the £135m Church of England Funded Pensions Scheme, which caters for clergy employed after 1998.
A CoE spokesman said: “A funded pension scheme was a huge new commitment for the dioceses and parishes.”
He said that in order to ease the transition, the commissioners set aside a sum of money from the CoE’s assets that could be used during the changeover.
The Church Commissioners’ total payment to the Church’s pensions expenditure in 2002 was £105.8m.
Its annual report showed that these additional contributions would continue until 2004 to help “smooth the impact of the rise in the contribution rate for the funded pensions scheme announced in 2001”.
In January, it was revealed that the CoE had fears it would have to sell up to half of its assets, mostly property, to meet its long-term pension obligations.
The General Synod voted overwhelmingly in November to retain the scheme, despite the financial pressure facing many DB schemes.
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