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BBC pension figures denounced as sham

15 October 2010

The BBC is under pressure to abandon a planned cut to staff pensions and come clean about the true finances of the corporation's pension scheme.

Figures drawn up for the BBC by financial consultants' that put the pension deficit at just under £1 billion have been leaked to unions.

In previous public statements, BBC bosses have claimed that the deficit would be £2 billion. The pension scheme's actuaries are believed to be quoting a figure of £1.5 billion.

The amounts are different because some things are variable, like the length of time pensioners will live. The actuaries and the BBC will have to agree on a final figure.

Jeremy Dear, NUJ General Secretary, said:

"The BBC sought to sell it's pensions robbery by claiming it had to plug a £2bn deficit. If today's figures are true, that has now been exposed as a sham. The BBC's credibility is in tatters and their justification for these punitive changes completely undermined. They must now come clean and re-start negotiations with everything on the table."

Members of the BBC staff unions, the NUJ, BECTU and Unite, have already voted by more than 90 percent in favour of strike action over changes to the pension scheme and are now voting in a consultative ballot on the BBC's latest pensions offer.

Tags: , BBC, pensions, bectu, unite, strike, broadcasting