UK newspaper reports say that the life and pensions provider Friends Provident is to close its final salary pension scheme to new starters.

The insurance group is however set to keep its final salary scheme open to existing staff, unlike some of its peers on the London stock exchange. However even existing staff are likely to make sacrifices, with Friends Provident asking staff either to make higher contributions or retire later, at 65 years rather than the current 60.

Keith Satchell, Friends Provident’s chief executive, said the company’s plans showed its ongoing commitment to the security of the current pension fund, and to provide high-quality pensions to our employees, both current and future.

However trade union Amicus said it was disappointed by the move, especially as it forces current staff to make a difficult choice over their retirement provision.