BT pension's Sir Tim Chessells to step down

UK - The £38.3bn (€55.9bn) BT pension fund is looking for a new trustee chairman to start at the end of this year.

Sir Tim Chessells will leave this position in December after nine years, a spokesman for BT confirmed to IPE.

At the end of last year, the BT trustees - under Chessells - managed to agree a deal to plug a £3.4bn deficit in the pension fund of the telecommunication giant, which included payments amounting to £2.8bn over 10 years.

However, a £520m cash injection earlier this year and considerable market appreciation have helped to shrink the deficit to £300m at the end of March 2007 along with a short-term swing into surplus in May.

At the time, Chessells told IPE because of the impact of UK interest rates the surplus accounting figures under FRS could alter again into a deficit.

The UK's largest pension fund, managed by Hermes, has outperformed the benchmark consistently over the last years, Chessells said.

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