PLSA outlines pension priorities for first 100 days of next government

Trade body calls on incoming government to take reform action in five key areas

Jonathan Stapleton
clock • 3 min read
Nigel Peaple: The next government must do everything it can to help everyone reach a good income in retirement
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Nigel Peaple: The next government must do everything it can to help everyone reach a good income in retirement

The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) has identified five key areas for pensions reform for the next government to enact in its first 100 days after winning the general election.

The trade body said it had identified specific actions for the incoming government in the below areas – actions it said would better secure the financial futures of millions of savers currently saving towards retirement.

The areas are:

  • Supporting adequate pension saving: The PLSA says the incoming government should extend auto-enrolment (AE); publish a roadmap for raising AE contributions and bring forth an Employment Bill to reclassify gig economy workers so they can start saving into a pension.
  • Helping savers navigate choices at retirement: The trade body is calling for the introduction of a statutory duty for trustees to offer decumulation advice for savers.
  • Supporting well-run defined benefit (DB) schemes: The PLSA urges an incoming government to ensure the final funding code that applies to DB pension funds provides greater flexibility over their investments. It also says it should ensure the final superfund regime offers at least the same level of protection to scheme members as the DB funding regime; and calls for the introduction of regulations to support greater surplus sharing among DB schemes with robust protections of member benefits.
  • Bridging the pensions and growth gap: The PLSA says the government should support the ongoing value for money regime to place more focus on performance. It should also identify a pipeline of investible opportunities which will both support UK growth and achieve the right risk-return and cost characteristics needed; and use the first budget to introduce fiscal incentives that make investing in UK growth more attractive than competing assets.
  • Supporting the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS): The PLSA says the incoming government should put into action the recommendations from the LGPS Scheme Advisory Boards's ‘Good Governance Project' to develop a common standard on governance, and foster effective relationships between pensions funds and asset pools with a focus on the type and quality of outcomes administering authorities should aim to achieve.

PLSA director of policy and advocacy Nigel Peaple said: "Workplace pensions are a vital part of the UK economy. They provide an essential retirement income for millions of workers and drive growth by investing over £1trn in our government and economy. Today more people are saving into workplace pensions, and they have more freedom over how to use their savings. But the future remains uncertain as people are not saving enough for retirement.

"The next government must do everything it can to help everyone reach a good income in retirement. We have identified five key areas of the UK pensions system where we would like a new government to take action on quickly, within the first 100 days of government, to better secure the financial futures of millions of savers."

What should a new government be prioritising when it comes to pensions? Are there areas of current pensions policy that should be changed or scrapped altogether? And what simple, low-cost policies could the next government implement in a bid to improve pensions policy?

Professional Pensions has launched the PP Pensions Commission in a bid to bring together industry opinions and ideas on the future of pensions ahead of the general election on 4 July.

Send your thoughts and ideas to the PP Pensions Commission via email to [email protected]

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