PRPP legislation receives Royal Assent: working Canadians big winners

TORONTO, June 28, 2012 /CNW/ - The Canadian life and health insurance industry congratulates the federal government on the passage of Bill C-25 which puts in place the legislative framework to implement Pooled Registered Pension Plans (PRPPs). "PRPPs are the great equalizer. Pensions will no longer be the sole privilege of those who work in the public sector or for large firms. Under PRPPs, all Canadians can benefit," says Frank Swedlove, President of the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CLHIA). "The big winners are small and medium sized businesses that currently can't afford to offer pension plans, as well as those private sector workers and the self-employed who don't have access to a pension plan," he added.  PRPPs are pooled, low-cost, professionally-managed pension plans. A survey that CLHIA conducted late last year found that 7 in 10 SME executives are interested in offering a PRPP.

All provinces have agreed to implement PRPPs but, so far, only Quebec has moved ahead with legislation to implement its version of PRPPs, called voluntary retirement savings plans. The Quebec legislation would ensure that all Quebec workers in workplaces with five or more employees, along with the self-employed, have access to a workplace retirement savings plan by 2015.

"We urge all provinces to move quickly and decisively to introduce PRPP legislation to give their workers every opportunity to save for retirement," added Swedlove.

Canada has one of the best retirement systems in the world according to the Melbourne-Mercer Global Pension Index. "The addition of PRPPs can only enhance Canada's stature on the global stage," noted Swedlove. "Canadians will have better access and more choices as they plan for their retirement."

About the CLHIA

The Canadian life and health insurance industry provides a wide range of financial security products, including life insurance, annuities (including RRSPs, RRIFs and pensions) and supplementary health insurance, to about 26 million Canadians and their dependents. Established in 1894, the CLHIA is a voluntary association whose member companies account for 99 per cent of Canada's life and health insurance business.

SOURCE Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association Inc.

For further information:

Media enquiries contact:
Wendy Hope, Vice President, External Relations (613) 230-0031


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