Maritime Pensions Campaign

My Ref: MRP 23/1                                                                                     
28th April 2021
Circular Num: NP/135/21
To: The Secretary All Shipping Branches & Regional Councils
Dear Colleagues,
Further to Circular NP/115/21, 9 th  April 2021, as previously advertised as part of the RMT’s Maritime Pensions Campaign two pension presentation were held remotely with ratings at Northlink Ferries invited. Also in attendance was a representative from the Ensign Retirement Plan who gave those in attendance an overview of this pension scheme and the benefits of joining.
While the RMT are keen to ensure that our members at Northlink Ferries have the best pension scheme avalalible I need to stress that we do not favour one pension scheme over another. However, based on the information we have received in respect of the three occupational pension scheme available to ratings at Northlink Ferries the Ensign Retirement Plan offers greater benefits then the other two arrangements on offer to employees.
As an example, Northlink Ferries will make an employer contribution of 6% into a member’s pension account which is 2% higher than the two other schemes on offer. The Annual Management Charge that deducted from members pension pot is only 0.31% which is significantly lower then the other arrangements on offer.
Perhaps more significantly membership of the Ensign Retirement Plan has three times salary life cover if a member passes away while in service. This is important if members want to protect their loved ones as we are aware that if a rating is a member of the Auto Enrolment pension scheme, they will receive no life cover and if they contributing to the MNRGPP they will receive two times salary death in service cover. I would advise that life cover ceases when a member reaches their State Pension Age.
Please find below details of three occupational pension scheme offered to employees at Northlink Ferries:
Life Cover
Membership Numbers
Auto Enrol Scheme
x 3 Basic Salary
x 2 Basic Salary
*There are 11 ratings who are not contributing to an occupational pension scheme and therefore have no life cover 
We are aware that management are keen to make sure that as many ratings as possible are in a pension scheme and are receiving the employer’s contribution. While again I must stress neither Northlink Ferries or the RMT are trying to give members financial advice it is important that ratings are aware of the benefits on offer and that they are planning for their retirement.
Management recently advised our representatives that there are 88 rating not taking advantage of the increased contribution rates and benefits provided by joining the Ensign industry scheme. In our view this number is far too high and needs to be addressed.
Management also advised the RMT that they are keen to offer rating the best possible occupational pension scheme and are more than happy to allow employees the opportunity to join the Ensign Retirement Plan. 
The RMT are planning to engage with other maritime employers to carry out similar pension presentation so that ratings can find out a little more about their potential retirement options.
In the meantime if members or our representatives want to find out more about pensions or have a question relating to their own pension the RMT Pensions Officer Paul Norris can be contacted at or on 020 7529 8806  
I will keep you updated on developments.
Yours sincerely,
Mick Cash 
General Secretary