UK - Trade unions and employers are divided over the government's pension proposals.
The Transport & General Workers’ Union dismissed the Green Paper as “a masterpiece in complacency”. But the steel workers’ union ISTC praised its protection of employee pensions as “historic”.
T&G general secretary Bill Morris said that the government had failed to grasp the true depth of the pensions crisis and had not gone far enough – particularly on compulsion.
But ISTC general secretary Michael Leahy said the paper’s measures to protect members’ pensions, insurance and consultation rights would provide “plenty of Christmas cheer” to workers.
The Confederation of British Industry called the government’s proposals a “useful first building block” for stabilising the pensions system.
It also supported the government’s decision not to introduce compulsory pensions and said that pension simplification will help employers retain schemes.
But the Engineering Employers’ Federation was disappointed that there was no timetable for implementing any reform.
Director-general Martin Temple said: “Employers want action not words from the government including firm target dates for implementing the proposals in the Green Paper if we are to tackle the serious problems facing UK’s long-established system of occupational pensions provision.”
The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has granted 11 master trusts extensions to apply for authorisation, as it confirms it has received 22 applications ahead of the 31 March deadline.
Aegon Master Trust, Fidelity Master Trust and Ensign have sent off their authorisation applications to The Pensions Regulator (TPR).
Self-administered pension funds spent £15bn on payments to pensioners in Q4 2018, but received just £12bn in contributions (net of refunds), Office for National Statistics (ONS) data reveals.
Aberdeen Standard Investments (ASI) and Gresham House are to team up to form a joint venture.