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Volume 459: debated on Wednesday 2 May 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what his estimate is of the number of people in Northern Ireland making (a) no provision and (b) insufficient provision for retirement pension; and what percentage of the workforce these figures represent. (134812)

Results from the Family Resources Survey 2005-06 show that 28,500 people (4.2 per cent. of the Northern Ireland work force) have no provision for state pension, 337,500 people (49.4 per cent. of the work force) have no provision for private pensions and 21,500 people (3.1 per cent. of the work force) have no provision for either state pension or private pensions.

The figures to enable an estimate to be made of the percentage of the work force in Northern Ireland making insufficient provision for retirement pension are not available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.


1. Figures refer to persons from working age 20 to state pension age who are either full or part-time employed (whether employees or self-employed) and do not include those not working.

2. Estimates are taken from the Family Resources Survey 2005-06 which is the latest year for which data are available. The estimates of numbers are less robust than the estimates of percentages.

3. Members who are contributing to a private pension scheme include those who are building up rights within a salary related scheme, those who are currently contributing to a scheme or whose employer makes a contribution on their behalf. Private pension refers to an occupational, personal or stakeholder pension scheme.

4. Individuals who contribute to both occupational and personal schemes are counted only once in these estimates.