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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 December 2005, 15:19 GMT
Report response 'pleases' Turner
Lord Turner
Lord Turner called for a 'sensible debate' on pension figures
Lord Turner says he is "quite pleased" with the way his report on the future of Britain's pensions system has been received.

The head of the Pensions Commission on Wednesday advised raising the state pension age from 65 to 68 by 2050.

"We're quite pleased with the overall effect of what's occurred over the last few days. We've launched a very major debate", he told the BBC.

Lord Turner said he thought the report would eventually win public support.

The Turner report proposed a gradual increase in pension age- to 66 by 2030, 67 by 2040 and 68 by 2050.

PENSIONS COMMISSION REPORT
Increases in the state pension age will be essential to keep the increase in public expenditure within limits

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Lord Turner said: "There's been a lot of support for the overall direction of change which we have suggested.

"It is a contentious issue. There are difficult choices to make. So of course, there are significant debates going on. But I think the debate has moved forward.

"This has been in the too-difficult camp for a long time, but people will be receptive when they understand how long they're going to live."

Lord Turner told the Telegraph newspaper he was surprised his report had prompted so much debate.

"This is an important issue of public policy but it's not war - it's not Aids in Africa," he said.

In return for an increase in the state pension age the commission said the basic state pension should in future rise in line with earnings, rather than inflation.

The report also proposed:

  • employees to be automatically enrolled into a new National Pension Savings Scheme (NPSS) if they are not already in a sufficiently-backed company scheme, although they would have the right to opt out
  • the current state second pension should evolve into a flat-rate payment
  • the state system should be "as non means-tested as possible"
  • the savings element of the pension credit should rise by less than average earnings




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