Date set for second reading of AE private member’s bill

The private member’s bill that is seeking to outline the roadmap for the extension of auto-enrolment (AE) policy to low earners and those aged 18 and over has had a date set for its second reading.

The bill, introduced by MP Richard Holden yesterday (5 January), will have a second reading on 25 February.

It aims to set out a plan for removing the lower qualifying earnings threshold for AE and extending AE to all jobholders aged at least 18 by 2026.

Presenting the bill to parliament, Holden stated that bringing the bill forward was “all about ambition – not mine, but the ambition of people to look after themselves, their families and their communities”.

The government has already committed to extending AE to low-income and younger workers by the mid-2020s.

Holden acknowledged the government’s pledge, adding that “people need to know that it is going to happen”.

“Business needs to be able to plan for it,” he continued.

“Our country needs to feel long-term levelling up in action, and one of the best ways we can do that is to give people certainty that this is coming down the track and that their pensions will be there for them, providing for them.”

The bill was introduced following a report by think tank Onward, which estimated that an additional £2.77trn could be invested in pensions if the changes were enacted.

“This legislation would transform the lives of millions of working people - not in great jobs but in low-paid work - who are the backbone of our country,” Holden added.

In the bill’s introduction to parliament, Holden was joined in presenting the bill by MPs Matt Vickers, Simon Fell, Gary Sambrook, Dehenna Davison, Paul Howell, Mark Jenkinson, Duncan Baker, Sally-Ann Hart, Antony Higginbotham, Jamie Wallis and Natalie Elphicke.

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