BBC’s DB pension deficit rises to £2bn

The BBC’s defined benefit (DB) pension deficit has risen, from £1.1 billion in 2010 to £2 billion at its 2013 triennial valuation.

To fund the deficit, the trustees have asked the BBC to increase the additional contributions it makes to the scheme.

Over the next four years, the BBC’s deficit contributions will total £740 million, compared with £375 million under the existing schedule.

This new schedule will continue until 2026 with the aim of eliminating the deficit.

According to the BBC, the worsening of the deficit is due to factors in common with all DB pension schemes. For example, while the scheme’s investments have performed better than expected, low interest rates and corresponding low gilt yields have caused the liabilities to increase by more than the assets.

The BBC’s pension scheme was closed to new entrants in 2010, alongside a range of other pension reforms.

A BBC spokesperson said: “We are pleased that, by working collaboratively with the pension trustees, we have finalised the valuation ahead of time, particularly in this economic environment, which is challenging for large pension schemes like the BBC’s.

“By anticipating this valuation result, we have agreed a sensible and affordable plan to address the deficit, without adversely affecting programmes or pension scheme members.”