Finance (No. 2) Bill

Part of Bill Presented – in the House of Commons at 1:36 pm on 1st April 2014.

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Photo of Danny Alexander Danny Alexander The Chief Secretary to the Treasury 1:36 pm, 1st April 2014

I am grateful to my hon. Friend for her contribution on these matters and for those specific comments. She is right that these are very liberal reforms. They are something of which we as a coalition can be proud. We have swept away the morass of means-testing of pensioners that built up under the previous Government and have ensured that every pensioner has a firm foundation from the state. They have a better basic state pension paid at the level of the single-tier pension. There is much greater flexibility for people to choose how to use additional savings in defined contribution schemes; after all, it is their money. I would go even further and say that this Government and this Finance Bill are about not only freeing up pensioners but providing additional freedom both for working people to keep more of the money that they have earned for themselves and for businesses that wish to invest.