Lib Dems plan £790 more on pensions

The basic state pension would be boosted by an extra £790 annually under manifesto plans unveiled by the Liberal Democrats.

The basic state pension would go up by an extra £790 yearly under Liberal Democrat manifesto plans, says pensions minister Steve Webb
The basic state pension would go up by an extra £790 yearly under Liberal Democrat manifesto plans, says pensions minister Steve Webb

Pensions minister Steve Webb said the Lib Dems would "guarantee in law" the "triple lock" arrangement whereby each year pensions would rise by the highest of wages, prices or 2.5%.

Under the party's pledge the state pension would be worth at least £131 per week by 2020, from £97.65 four years ago, Mr Webb said.

He added the basic state pension had increased in each year of the last Parliament with the level now £440 higher per year in 2014-15, than if pensions had risen in line with earnings - worth £800 a year more in total.

Mr Webb said: "A decent income in retirement for pensioners is central to the Liberal Democrat vision of a fair society.

"For decades, successive Labour and Conservative governments allowed the state pension to decline after Mrs Thatcher broke the 'earnings link' in 1980.

"Our manifesto promise of a 'triple lock' has been implemented every year since 2010 and means that the state pension is already a higher share of the national average wage than at any time since the early 1990s.

"But if we are serious about having a decent state pension we need to go further. That is why the Liberal Democrats will guarantee in law that in each year pensions will rise by the highest of wages, prices or 2.5%."

Mr Webb added the "triple lock guarantee" would ensure a rise in the state pension value of at least £790 annually by the end of the next Parliament. Pensioners who receive the full state pension would get at least £6,800 in 2020.