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C&W continues pensions buyout deliberation

UK - The Cable & Wireless pension scheme is still pursuing the possibility of shifting its £2bn (€2.9bn) in assets into a pension buyout along with other options, officials the UK-listed company has stated.

Contrary to UK media reports suggesting a buyout had been rejected on cost grounds, telecoms firm C&W is still in discussions about the future of the pension scheme, a spokeswoman for C&W told IPE.

"We have certainly not told our investors that the costs of offloading our liabilities of our main UK scheme are too high. With the trustees of the scheme, we are pursuing broad opportunities and it is much too early to know if this process will lead to a transaction or not," she stated.

That said, the scheme's triennial evaluation has been brought by a year to help the decision process, she added.

Cable & Wireless confirmed in October it was in early talks about the future management of the scheme, on the back of news C&W was looking to break the UK operation from its profitable international arm.

At its last report, the group's UK pension fund had a £43m IAS19 surplus.

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