MONTREAL, Dec. 14, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Standard Life has called on provincial and territorial finance ministers to support Pooled Registered Pension Plans (PRPPs) that will help Canadians save for a secure retirement.
In advance of the upcoming meeting of federal, provincial and territorial finance ministers in Ottawa on December 16 and 17, Standard Life has sent individual letters encouraging each finance minister to support the federal government's lead on PRPPs and adopt enabling legislation that will allow workers covered under provincial jurisdictions to participate in the program.
"The Government of Canada has done the right thing by adopting Bill C-25, the Pooled Registered Pension Plans Act," said Charles Guay, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Now that the federal legislation has passed, it is time for provinces to take leadership on this important initiative and adopt the PRPP framework that was agreed to in 2010."
Pooled Registered Pension Plans provide a workplace retirement plan for individuals who would not otherwise have one - including self-employed Canadians. By pooling their savings, employees are able to achieve cost savings similar to those available to large pension plans. Pooled Registered Pension Plans also help employees save through payroll deductions. Employers can choose to contribute to PRPPs on behalf of their workers, but there is no requirement to do so.
Pooled Registered Pension Plans have been identified by the federal government as one way to avoid a potential crisis among retirees in Canada. It is estimated that more than half of working Canadians today do not have a workplace retirement plan, and personal savings are at historic lows. The proposed PRPPs can help people save within the workplace and provide a reliable income stream in retirement.
"Using PRPPs to encourage savings by Canadians who don't currently have access to a pension plan just makes good sense," said Mr. Guay.
In order to ensure the plans will be as effective as possible and to maximize the greatest amount of participation by Canadians, Standard Life also recommended to ministers that legislation be designed to include such measures as mandatory sponsorship and automatic enrollment, and that it be harmonized among the provinces.
Incorporating these simple but effective measures will help Canadians save for a secure future and will allow PRPPs to achieve their objective to provide Canadians with a new accessible, simple and low-cost retirement option.
About Standard Life
Standard Life plc is a leading long-term savings and investment company headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland. Standard Life has around six million customers worldwide and operates in the United Kingdom, Europe, North America and Asia, and globally with Standard Life Investments Ltd.
In Canada, Standard Life has been doing business for almost 180 years. It operates under Standard Life Financial Inc., which wholly owns The Standard Life Assurance Company of Canada and Standard Life Mutual Funds Ltd. It is Standard Life plc's largest operation outside the UK with about 2,000 employees. It provides long-term savings, investment and insurance solutions to more than 1.4 million Canadians, including group retirement and insurance plan members.
As of September 30, 2012, Standard Life plc had C$337 billion in assets under administration, including C$44 billion in Canada through Standard Life Financial.
SOURCE: STANDARD LIFE
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