IRELAND - The Irish Association of Pension Funds (IAPF) has expressed disappointment that the recommendations of the National Pensions Review (NPR) report were not implemented in the recent Finance Bill.
IAPF chairman Joe Byrne said the government had missed an opportunity to use the “SSIA (Special Savings Incentive Account) window” to address problems such as pensions adequacy and coverage.
While the SSIA incentive to the lower paid is to be applauded there are many on higher tax rates whose current pensions provision is inadequate,” he said.
However, the IAPF said it welcomed the increase in contribution limits for those aged over 55, a flexibility which it had sought in its pre-budget submission on the grounds that the increase would allow those who could not afford to save adequately for retirement early on in their careers the opportunity to make up for lost time.
The initiative in the Finance Bill to allow incentives on a once-off basis for SSIAs savers on low incomes to convert up to e7,500 should be applauded, said the IAPF, because it would provide an impetus to individuals without a pension to start making provision for their retirement.
However, without further long term initiatives in this area, thispension savings vehicle will remain completely inadequate, said Byrne.
It is therefore essential that the savings habit created by theSSIA vehicle should continue in a pensions format as recommended in the NPR report.
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