SRI backers fail to change pensions BillJune 2008
The UK government has defeated a parliamentary move to introduce socially responsible investment principles into its future plans for national pensions.
The shadow pensions minister recently tabled an amendment to the Pensions Bill that would have required the newly-created Personal Accounts Delivery Authority (Pada) to have regard to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment, which have been adopted by many pension funds. Pada will oversee various aspects of a future ‘affordable’ pensions regime for up to seven million people.
The clause, which was thrown out on a vote, specified that adherence to the UN principles would be part of Pada’s contractual arrangements with fund managers.
Pensions minister Mike O’Brien said that while the government supports the UN Principles it feels it should be a matter for the trustees to consider whether to apply them.
However, he added that socially responsible investment will be addressed in public consultation on Pada’s investment policy, which is due to take place later this year.
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