The Pension Protection Fund has rejected claims it will be forced to cut member benefits as a result of the recession.
Chief executive Partha Dasgupta told IFAonline's sister publication, Professional Pensions, there was "categorically no chance" of member benefits being reduced.
He said extensive modelling - which included extreme catastrophes - had ruled out benefit cuts.
His comments come as PPF figures revealed the aggregate funding position of the 7800 defined benefit funds monitored by the lifeboat fund worsened to £136bn in November.
Occupational Pensions Trust director Ben Shaw said it was likely the PPF would either raise levies or cut benefits as it battled to cope with more schemes calling on its protection.
Shaw argued that a bailout similar to the banking sector would be impossible for government so benefits would be gradually reduced to 85pc from the present 90pc.
He said: "The PPF can cut benefits levels. Realistically I believe that is what will happen over the next three to five years. There are now cases where schemes are pushed into the PPF because of the levy."
However, Dasgupta refuted the claims. "It is important that we are clear that in terms of the economic downturn we are getting on with the job. The important message is that there is a safety net in contrast to the last recession."
He added: "We are alive to what is happening and wanted to make sure the levy remained affordable. When we have recovered it may be right that we reassess that risk."IFAonline
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