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Naismith poses tough questions

The Government has to ask itself serious questions about its pension plans, such as whether the target of 60 per cent private provision is right, says Scottish Widows head of pensions market development Ian Naismith.

Speaking at a fringe event at the LibDem conference, Naismith said that the Government’s response to the Turner report must be to provide a better balance including radical reform of the state second pension and possibly scrapping it.

He believes that the recent announcement by the Government Actuary’s Department on the level of contracting-out rebates for the next five years indicates that contracting out will be as good as killed off.

He considers that tax incentives will be needed to put pressure on employers to matching employee contributions as well as a rise in the state pension age.

He said pension simplification had been set up to help high-earners and focus must be switched to those at the other end of the social ladder.

Naismith said: “We have to ask questions such as whether the 60-40 target for pension provision is correct, whether state retirement age needs to rise and what as a nation we are willing to pay.”

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