Let the winners run!

UK Superfund plan – KNOWHOW

The UK superfund plan is a new initiative launched by the Prime Minister and the Technology Secretary on 6 March 2023, with the aim of making the UK a global science and technology superpower by 2030.

The plan outlines key actions that will involve every part of the government

  • Identifying and pursuing strategic advantage in the technologies that are most critical to achieving UK objectives
  • Showcasing the UK’s S&T strengths and ambitions at home and abroad to attract talent, investment and boost our global influence
  • Boosting private and public investment in research and development for economic growth and better productivity
  • Building on the UK’s already enviable talent and skills base
  • Financing innovative science and technology start-ups and companies
  • Capitalising on the UK government’s buying power to boost innovation and growth through public sector procurementSshaping the global science and tech landscape through strategic international engagement, diplomacy and partnerships
  • Ensuring researchers have access to the best physical and digital infrastructure for R&D that attracts talent, investment and discoveries.

Government funding

The plan is backed by over £370 million in new government funding to support infrastructure, investment and skills for the UK’s most exciting growing technologies, such as quantum and supercomputing, AI, biotechnology, clean energy, space and robotics. The plan is expected to create high-paid jobs of the future, grow the economy in cutting-edge industries, and improve people’s lives from better healthcare to security.

Government funding for Superfund

The funding sources for the UK superfund plan are mainly from the government’s budget allocation for science and technology, which has increased by 50% since 2020 to reach £22 billion per year by 2024/25. The government has also committed to increase public spending on R&D to 2.4% of GDP by 2027, which is expected to leverage additional private sector investment. Moreover, the government has established a new agency called Advanced Research & Invention Agency (ARIA), which will have a budget of £800 million over four years to fund high-risk, high-reward research projects that could lead to breakthroughs in science and technology.

Foreign investment

The UK superfund plan also aims to attract more foreign direct investment (FDI) into the UK’s science and technology sector, by promoting the UK as a leading destination for innovation and showcasing its world-class research facilities, talent pool, regulatory environment and market opportunities. The government has set a target of increasing FDI stock in R&D from £45 billion in 2018 to £67 billion by 2025.

The UK superfund plan is a separate initiative from the superfund consolidators for defined benefit (DB) pensions, which are a new innovation in the UK pension industry. Transferring a DB pension scheme to a superfund can improve the security of members’ benefits by replacing a weak employer covenant with a capital buffer. The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has published guidance for trustees and sponsoring employers of UK DB pension schemes considering transacting with a superfund.

GB Savings One Fund

The GB Savings One Fund is a proposal by the Tony Blair Institute (TBI) to create the country’s first superfund for pensions. According to the TBI, the superfund would be an expansion of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), which is a statutory fund that provides compensation to members of eligible defined benefit (DB) pension schemes in the UK when their employers become insolvent.

The UK Superfund

The Tony Blair Institute suggests that sponsors of the smallest 4,500 UK DB schemes would be offered the voluntary option of transferring to the PPF on a benefit preserving basis, which would improve the security and efficiency of their pensions.

The institute also proposes that the PPF model should be replicated and rolled out throughout the UK in a series of regional, not-for-profit entities that sit within a master governance structure under the existing fund or participate in consolidation in parallel with and modelled on the original GB Savings. 

The TBI argues that this approach would result in a modernised pension system that would generate better returns for pensioners, attract more investment and talent, and strengthen pensions for the entire generation stuck with inadequate provision since the closure of the DB funds over the past two decades.

GB Bank

The GB Savings One Fund is not related to GB Bank, which is a bank that offers competitive savings accounts that support residential and commercial developments in communities that need them most. GB Bank has a full UK banking licence and offers the same level of protection as the traditional high street banks. 

When you save with GB Bank, your money is protected up to £85,000 by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *