The publication of a Scottish Government paper outlining plans for state, private and public sector pensions in an independent Scotland has been described today as a major step towards a system that is ‘fairer for Scotland’.
The paper confirms that the current UK state pension system will be used as the foundation for an independent Scotland, but with greater protections built in for pensioners across Scotland. The paper guarantees that all pensions in an independent Scotland will be paid on time and in full.
The Scottish Government has also made clear that it is not persuaded that Westminster’s accelerated plans to raise the state pension age to 67 between 2026 and 2028 fit Scotland’s needs. An expert commission will therefore be set up to re-examine Westminster’s current plans to speed up moves to raise the retirement age in light of Scotland’s particular demographics.
Commenting, SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson who convenes the Finance Committee said:
“The publication of today’s paper will be a welcome reassurance to older people across Scotland.
“It provides certainty to Scotland’s pensioners and unambiguously guarantees that all pensions in an independent Scotland will be paid on time and in full.
“While Westminster is rushing towards raising the state pension age well ahead of schedule, we in the SNP are not convinced that this is right for Scotland where life expectancy is lower on average compared to the rest of the UK.
“Successive Westminster Governments have let older people down badly when it comes to protecting their pensions. With a Yes vote next year, we will put in place stronger safeguards to give pensioners in Scotland greater protection in their retirement.
“The plans being set out today are a major step towards building a pensions system that is fairer for Scotland. People in Scotland have consistently said that they want these decisions to be made in Scotland by the Scottish Parliament – something only a Yes vote will secure.
“A Yes vote in next year’s referendum is a vote for a fairer pensions system that does more to protect and safeguard the incomes of older people in Scotland.”