asked the Minister for the Civil Service if he will give his best estimate of the cost of increasing all public sector pensions to bring them in line with the rates currently paid to persons of comparable rank and service retiring now.
§ Mr. Channon
The size of pensions awarded in public service pension schemes depends upon the individual's reckon-able service and pensionable pay at the time of retirement. Considerable variations exist, however, both in the dates of pay settlements for different groups of public employees and in the levels of salary increases in recent years. To obtain an estimate of the kind requested it would, therefore, be necessary to examine each employment group and each salary grade within the group and to make necessarily arbitrary assumptions about the pattern of service of all retired public employees. Such a study could be carried out only at disproportionate cost.