The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has reacted angrily to the news that Royal Mail is planning on closing its final salary pension scheme to new entrants.
The company’s pensions gap is currently £6.6bn and chief executive Adam Crozier said the deficit was “damaging competitiveness”.
Dave Ward, CWU deputy general secretary, said the announcement had come as a complete shock to the union.
“We have not been involved in discussions on this issue nor have we even been made aware of these intentions. The government and Royal Mail have had a responsibility to discuss the future of the pension scheme with us and they have failed to do so.
Ward said during the six-month consultation on this issue the CWU would “marshal its opposition to the plans”.
Royal Mail also unveiled plans to give “phantom” shares to its employees.
Paul McGlone, principal and actuary at Aon Consulting, said: “While reflective of what is going on in the UK market, today’s announcement by Royal Mail is interesting because of its quasi-public sector status.
“Now the government has recognised the need for limiting the pension liability going forward, it will be interesting to see if it will act on the vastly bigger problem of public sector pensions.”