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People should be allowed to save more – campaigners

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28/01/2013
A group of consumer organisations, employers and trades unions have demanded the Government lifts the restrictions on the National Employment Savings Trust.
People should be allowed to save more – campaigners

The government consulted on lifting the contribution limit and the ban on transfers in and out of NEST last year. The consultation closes today.

The Trades Union Congress, Age UK, manufacturers’ organisation EEF, the Federation of Small Businesses, the British Chambers of Commerce and Which? have all signed the letter claiming the restrictions make auto-enrolment more difficult for employers and workers.

Signatories complained that the restraints prevent employers using NEST as the single scheme for their entire workforces, and prevents workers from putting in extra contributions towards the end of their working lives to maximise their savings.

They called on the government to remove the restrictions now, rather than reviewing the restraints after a review in 2017 as currently planned. The signatories claim this will be too late as employers will already have selected their schemes and auto-enrolled their staff by then.

The letter reads: “NEST was established as a low cost not-for-profit scheme to serve the low- to middle-income market which was not being well served by commercial suppliers.

“To the extent that the restrictions forced NEST to concentrate on this target audience, they have done their job. Lifting the restrictions now will not undermine this. On the contrary, it will improve the prospects of NEST’s objective being met.”

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