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Pension Schemes: UK Investment Incentives

Volume 737: debated on Tuesday 5 September 2023

At Mansion House, the Government presented a series of pension reforms that will increase returns for savers and enable the financial sector to unlock capital for some of the UK’s most promising industries. The Department continues work to build on the initial package of measures and will set out further details in the autumn.

I thank the Minister for his answer and welcome those measures. Have the Government considered what more can be done to unlock surpluses in defined-benefit schemes to allow employers to use that money more effectively, rather than having it end up going into insurance companies on buy-outs? There is a huge tax penalty on unlocking surpluses. Is there a way of relieving that to encourage the money to be invested more efficiently?

My hon. Friend makes an important point. With the right precautions, it is right that we look at that to incentivise employers to deliver the highest returns for pension savers.

The Government have to date taken £4.4 billion from the mineworkers’ pension scheme. The then cross-party Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee concluded that the Government should not be “profiting from mineworkers’ pensions.” How does the Secretary of State justify their continued profiteering?

I am not familiar with the issue that the hon. Lady speaks about. I would be very happy to meet her to understand it in more detail.