Nearly a quarter (24%) of delegates at the Employee Benefits Pensions and Workplace Savings Summit 2012 believe that auto-enrolment will not close the retirement savings gap in the UK, according to a poll taken on 8 March at the event.
A fifth (18%) of the high-level reward and benefits professionals attending the event, meanwhile, said that auto-enrolment will close the savings gap, while more than half (58%) said it was possible it would do so.
During a panel debate titled ‘Understanding the true impact auto-enrolment will have on employers’, David Pitt-Watson, author of Building the consensus for a people’s pension in Britain, said: “We have to get people into this pension system. This is the way forward. We are at a very important place in history right now.”
Pitt-Watson also compared the UK pension system with institutions such as the BBC, the NHS and the monarchy. “These are things Britain does well.”
However, he added: “This [pensions] system, which was the pride of Britain 25 years ago, has been slipping.”
Delegates were also keen to find out whether other workplace savings options would have a role in closing the savings gap, but Pitt-Watson cautioned them against rolling pensions and workplace savings into one. “They are two separate puddings,” he said.
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