14 June 2006
James Purnell, the Minister for Pensions Reform, says that
further work is needed to ensure that cross party consensus on
pensions reform is reached.
Speaking at the Industry Forum yesterday, James Purnell noted
high levels of agreement on addressing the pensions challenge by
both political parties and stakeholders, but warned that the
Government should not "kid itself" that the job is done.
James Purnell said: "We are serious about developing a consensus
with the Opposition parties. This is a policy with a fifty year
horizon. People need stability when making long-term savings
decisions. They will feel more confident if they know that they are
investing on the basis of a policy agenda that is shared between
"We were encouraged by the initial consensus that greeted the
White Paper. We want to deepen that consensus by engaging with
Opposition Parties. We will make civil servants available to them
to brief them on the policy. We will be happy to meet with them to
discuss specific issues they have around the White Paper. And we
will aim to have a parliamentary process that symbolises the
emerging consensus on pensions.
"Pensions are too important to be the subject of political point
scoring. The public expect us to create a stable framework within
which they can invest. The Government will be tireless in seeking
to develop that consensus."