I know that the Government is fully committed to ensuring that older people can live with the dignity and respect they deserve, and the State Pension is the foundation of state support for older people.
As announced at Autumn Statement 2023, the Government is maintaining the Triple Lock. This means that the basic State Pension, new State Pension and Pension Credit standard minimum guarantee will be uprated in April 2024 in line with average earnings growth of 8.5 per cent. As a result, the new State Pension will be worth up to £900 a year more.
The Government also provides additional support to older people, which includes the provision of free bus passes, free prescriptions, and Winter Fuel Payments, with Cold Weather Payments for those in receipt of Pension Credit.
Comparing pension provision in the UK with that of other countries is complicated by substantial differences in the structure of pension systems across the developed world. Countries differ not just in the reliance placed on state pension provision as a component of overall pensioner income but also in the structure, eligibility criteria and financing basis of the state pension system.
In the UK, income from occupational and personal pensions is a relatively important source of pensioner income, in contrast to many other countries where state provision (financed either through social insurance contributions or general taxation) is dominant.