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General Election 2010: Tories promise invigoration of occupational pensions and extension of flexible working rights

The Conservative Party pledges to extend flexible working rights and overhaul occupational pension provision should they win the General Election.

In the Conservative manifesto, published this morning, the Party has pledged to extend the right to request flexible working to everyone in the public sector. The Party has also promised to work in consultation with private-sector businesses to extend the right there as well.

The manifesto states the Party will encourage saving and investment by means testing the basic state pension and restoring a link between earnings and retirement benefits, should it come to power.

It says a Conservative government will ‘reinvigorate occupational pensions' and work with employers and industry to support auto-enrolment into defined-contribution schemes. The manifesto also contained a pledge to address ‘disparity between public-sector and private- sector pensions'.

As part of the Party's plan to ‘get Britain working again' the Tories have pledged 400,000 apprenticeship placements, a £2,000 grant to small businesses for each apprentice they take on and ‘targeted,  personalised' help for jobseekers.

There is also a pledge to allow more powers to the Bank of England to crack down on ‘risky bonus arrangements' in the financial sector.

The manifesto follows the release of Labour's plans yesterday and comes ahead of the Liberal Democrats' manifesto due to be published tomorrow morning.

What do you think of the Conservative and Labour Party manifestos? Let us know on our forum or vote for the one you think will bring the best employment policies on our online poll.