Eleven organisations join forces to sign pensions charter and call for reform

Bodies including the PLSA, ABI and TISA set out consensus ahead of general election

Jonathan Stapleton
clock • 2 min read
PLSA director of policy and advocacy Nigel Peaple
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PLSA director of policy and advocacy Nigel Peaple

Eleven organisations have joined forces to sign a charter calling for major reforms to improve outcomes and create an “adequate, fair and affordable pension savings system for all”.

The charter - Building a Consensus for Better Pensions ­- urges political parties to commit to reforming the UK pensions system and pledge to set clear objectives for the UK retirement savings system; protect the value of the state pension; and bring excluded groups within the scope of auto-enrolment (AE).

It also called for support over future policies that improve guidance, communications and promote improved outcomes for pension savers.

Initial signatories to the charter include the Association of British Insurers, Age UK, Association of Consulting Actuaries, Association of Professional Pension Trustees, Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals, Lane Clark & Peacock, the Pensions Administration Standards Association, the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA), the People's Partnership and The Investing and Saving Alliance (TISA).

The move comes as political parties step up preparations for the next general election, which will need to be called by mid-December and held no later than 28 January 2025.

PLSA director of policy and advocacy Nigel Peaple commented on the charter. He said: "It's almost 20 years since the Pensions Commission proposed reforms to the UK pension system. Although, as a result of those reforms, more people are eligible for the state pension and are saving for retirement in the workplace, too many are falling far short of being on track for a good retirement income.  

"We, and the other signatories to this charter, are asking that all the main UK political parties commit to putting pension reform in their general election manifestos so as to ensure that everyone in the UK has a good income in retirement."

People's Partnership director of policy Phil Brown added: "We've long called for there to be a consensus on what the objectives should be for the UK's pensions system and this plan is a significant step towards achieving this.

"AE has been a tremendous success, but it can be improved and widened to even more people, especially the lower paid. It is also vital that pensions are made fairer and that the gaps which mean that women and some ethnic minorities are worse off in retirement are closed."

LCP head of DC practice Laura Myers added: "This important charter sets out the fundamental things that we support to ensure that our industry helps people to save at the right levels to enjoy a good quality of life in retirement. The PLSA has been leading the way with initiatives like the Retirement Living Standards which have set fantastic guidelines around what constitutes a comfortable retirement and now this charter will build consensus to ensure we as an industry come together to ensure our savers get there.

"As a firm we will continue to support making pensions less complicated and to raise awareness about how important they are for people and society as a whole. We need a system that gives adequate outcomes but is affordable and fair, and this charter articulates the steps we support to achieve those aims."

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