Guy Opperman set to become longest serving Pensions Minister

Guy Opperman is set to become the longest serving Pensions Minister tomorrow (11 June), having been in the post for a total of 1,822 days as of 10 June 2022.

His ongoing tenure since 14 June 2017 means he has equalled the 1,822 days Steve Webb was in the job between 12 May 2010 and 8 May 2015.

During his time as Pensions Minister, Opperman has overseen several policy changes, most notably the development and passage of the Pension Schemes Act 2021.

The act introduced a number of policy initiatives, such as the framework for the introduction of pensions dashboards and collective defined contribution (CDC) schemes, the expansion of The Pensions Regulator’s (TPR’s) powers, and the requirement for schemes to adopt and report against the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).

He also oversaw the introduction of new powers for trustees to halt pension transfers if they saw signs of a suspected scam.

“I am privileged to have served as Pensions Minister of this great country for the last five years, commented Opperman.

“I’m proud of the progress made, especially our landmark Pension Schemes Act which made pensions safer, better and greener, and am excited about what’s still to come as we work to ensure the record number of Brits now saving for a pension can achieve the best retirement possible.”

Currently, Opperman and the Department for Work and Pensions are working on increasing pension investment in illiquid assets and ‘productive finance’, while many hope that work will soon begin on implementing the findings of the 2017 Auto-enrolment Review.

Commenting on Opperman’s tenure so far, LCP partner, Steve Webb, stated: “I congratulate Guy Opperman on becoming the longest serving pensions minister of modern times.

“There is no doubt that pensions policy benefits from consistency rather than a ‘revolving door’ of ministers, and it is good to have a minister who actually wants the job.

“Mr Opperman has many things to be proud of, including moving much nearer to the go-live for pensions dashboards, and helping to enable the first CDC schemes in the UK, as well as raising the profile of climate change in the pensions and investment world.

“But I am sure that he will be disappointed by how little progress has been made on automatic enrolment, as shown by the fact that the 2017 review remains gathering dust nearly five years later.”

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