Posted: Fri 24th Jan 2020

Finance Minister demands UK Government helps young people access their Child Trust Funds

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Jan 24th, 2020

Finance Minister Rebecca Evans has written to the UK Treasury demanding that young people in Wales are helped to gain access to their Child Trust Funds. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Every child born in the UK between 2002 and 2011 received an initial payment of £250 from the then UK Labour Government to help them start saving towards their futures, before the scheme was abolished by the UK Conservative Government. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The Welsh Government also provided an additional top-up to the Child Trust Fund for children in Wales as they began primary school. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

However, figures show that almost 2 million parents did not invest these vouchers, meaning that many investments remain forgotten. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Data from HMRC suggests that a total of 273,000 Child Trust Fund accounts were opened in Wales. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

In 2012 the total value of Child Trust Funds in Wales was assessed by HMRC to be around £200m, which equates to an average value of £733.00 per account. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

In many cases the value of Child Trust Funds will have risen significantly since 2012. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

With the first of these trust funds starting to mature in September, as the first wave of young people turn 18, the Finance Minister is demanding that the UK Government takes urgent action to reunite young people with their savings. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Rebecca Evans said; ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“The funds committed by both the then UK Government and Welsh Government were an investment in our children’s future. Whether young people choose to re-invest and save, or use the money to cover costs to help with the next stage of their lives, they shouldn’t be prevented from doing so simply because they don’t know this saving exists. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“The UK Government needs to act now to ensure that young people are supported in accessing their savings. Here in Wales we will be taking our own steps to raise awareness of this issue.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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