Pooled Registered Pension Plans needed as retirement plan coverage declines

September, 2012 – Important new statistics on retirement plan coverage were released today by OSFI’s Office of the Chief Actuary. These figures show slippage of the proportion of Canadian workers covered by a Registered Pension Plan (RPP) over the past 10 years. While the overall percentage has dropped by 2% to 39% of all paid workers, the biggest impact is on workers in the private sector, where just 24% have RPP coverage, down from 28% a decade ago.

“These statistics underscore the urgent need for a policy that is directed towards allowing Canadians with the opportunity to save for retirement at the workplace. Pooled Registered Pension Plans clearly fill this need,” commented Frank Swedlove, president of the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association.

PRPPs are pooled, low-cost, professionally-managed and transferrable pension plans that provide opportunities for the millions of Canadian workers, including the self-employed, who do not currently have access to any type of pension plan in the workplace.

Finance Ministers across the country agreed on the PRPP concept in late 2010. The federal government and Quebec have both taken action to move forward with PRPPs, but legislation is needed in each province to implement PRPPs on a national basis.

“The life insurance industry strongly urges all provinces to move as swiftly as possible to introduce the necessary PRPP legislation that will allow the 76% of Canadian private sector workers without a pension plan to have access to one. It’s the right thing to do,” adds Swedlove.

About the CLHIA

The Canadian life and health insurance industry provides a wide range of financial security products, including life insurance, annuities (including RRSPs, RRIFs and pensions) and supplementary health insurance, to about 26 million Canadians and their dependents. Established in 1894, the CLHIA is a voluntary association whose member companies account for 99 per cent of Canada’s life and health insurance business.