The net balance sheet position of the pension plans at the end of Q1 2015 was a deficit of €0.8 billion, flat on year-end 2014. This was the result of the net effect of:

  • Lower discount rates in key countries
  • Further de-risking of pension liabilities of €680 million in the ICI Pension Fund in the UK, with an additional non-cash buy-in transaction giving rise to an adverse impact of €110 million in Other comprehensive income

Offset by:

  • Top-up payments of €330 million into certain UK defined benefit pension plans
  • Higher asset returns and lower inflation