Pensions minister Laura Trott hints the Tories could keep the triple lock in next year’s manifesto after Rishi Sunak refused to commit to its long-term future
- PM and other ministers refused to guarantee long-term future of triple lock
- Miss Trott suggested that Conservatives will back the system again next election
Pensions minister Laura Trott yesterday hinted that the Conservatives will commit to keeping the triple lock in next year’s manifesto.
But Miss Trott yesterday suggested that the Conservatives will back the system again when the next Tory manifesto is published.
Speaking during a round of broadcast interviews yesterday, she said: ‘The next manifesto is not written yet, but I cannot overstate how committed we are.
‘This is something we have championed, we have put it through, we have protected those pensioners and that is always going to be a priority for this government.’
Laura Trott (pictured) yesterday suggested that the Conservatives will back the system again when the next Tory manifesto is published
The triple lock guarantees that the state pension will rise in line with either inflation, earnings or 2.5 per cent, whichever is highest.
It was introduced by the coalition government in 2010 following derisory increases of as little as 75p a week under the last Labour government.
Official figures last week revealed that average earnings rose by 8.5 per cent, which is higher than the expected inflation figure.
The Treasury is now examining ways to cut the cost. Stripping out bonuses from the earnings figure could reduce the rise to 7.8 per cent, saving the Treasury hundreds of millions of pounds.
A report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies this month found that the triple lock had boosted pensioner incomes by £100 a month, but warned about the long-term cost.
The independent think-tank said the potential cost was so high it would place ‘insurmountable pressure’ on the government to raise the state pension age in order to control the bill to the taxpayer.
Rishi Sunak and other senior ministers have refused to guarantee the long-term future of the triple lock
Some senior Tories, including former business secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg, have called for the government to switch to a cheaper system in which pensions would rise simply in line with inflation.
But ministers are nervous about antagonising older voters in the run-up to the next election.
Downing Street yesterday said the Prime Minister was committed to the triple lock, but declined to say whether it would be included in the next manifesto.
Labour has also refused to commit to the system, with Sir Keir Starmer saying only that Labour would guarantee a ‘fair and decent pension’.