§ Mr. Woodward
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to reform the pension annuities system. 
§ Ruth Kelly
For some time the Government have actively encouraged innovation in the annuity market to improve benefits for customers. As a continuation of this, the pre-Budget report on 27 November announced its intention to publish a consultation document on increasing flexibility and competition in the annuity market.
This consultation document, called 'Modernising Annuities', was issued on 5 February and is intended to stimulate discussion on annuity issues. The consultation period will run until 5 April and the Government will then consider the responses carefully before deciding how to proceed.