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Pensions: Females

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN HL7876, tabled on 15 May 2018

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to tackle the gender gap in pensions, as highlighted in a recent report from the Centre for Study of Financial Innovation, The Dependency Trap—are we fit enough to face the future?.

Answered on

23 May 2018

The report by the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation raises issues concerning differences in earnings between genders that cannot be tackled by the pensions system alone. The Government remains committed to minimising the gender pay gap.

On pension saving, through automatic enrolment into workplace pensions we are helping those who were historically disadvantaged in terms of occupational pension provision – often women and lower earners – to build up their retirement savings. Since the introduction of automatic enrolment the proportion of women employed full-time in the private sector without a workplace pension has decreased from 65 per cent in 2012 to 31 per cent in 2016. It is also equalising workplace pension participation among eligible men and women. In 2016, 73 per cent of eligible men and women in the private sector were saving into a workplace pension compared with 43 per cent and 40 per cent of eligible men and women respectively in the private sector in 2012.

Our aim is to continue to increase the levels of retirement saving amongst all groups. The 2017 review of automatic enrolment sets out our ambition for strengthening the framework of workplace pension saving for lower paid workers (many of whom are women working part-time). Over the coming year we will work to build a renewed consensus to deliver the detailed design and implementation of our proposals.