Anthony Hilton: Push for pension merger

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The Independent Online

Government desperately wants to mobilise pension fund money to invest in infrastructure but seems unable or unwilling to take the steps to make it happen. Months of negotiations with and between the funds have produced an outline for a small scheme which might mobilise one or two billion pounds. It is a start but nothing like what is needed.

There is another way. Anthony Mayer is chairman of the biggest London-based public-sector fund, the £4bn London Pensions Fund Authority. But there are 34 other local authority funds in London, so he told his members on Tuesday how LPFA was trying to get them all to merge into one. This he says would create a £25bn-£30bn fund which would not only be significantly less costly to run, but would be big enough to have its own infrastructure fund.

But progress is slow because turkeys rarely vote for Christmas, even if it is a good idea. It badly needs political support to push it through. But thus far there has been little sign of it.