The pressure on the government to set up a pool to cover long-tail disease claims increased this week after the Engineering Employers Federation (EEF) called for "root and branch reform" of the compensation system.

In a report published this week, the EEF said the wild swings in employers' liability premiums remained, with some firms reporting premiums increasing by 273% and others reporting falls of 73%.

It also said that premiums were not reflecting risk management systems in place and criticised the government for "failing to show leadership" in relation to rehabilitation.

The EEF added that steps needed to be taken to reduce legal costs and encourage rehabilitation. It also called for consultation on the need for a long-tail disease funding arrangement.

EEF director Gary Booton said: "There remains a strong case for root and branch reform."

Justin Jacobs, ABI head of liability and motor, said: "The momentum for change is gathering pace.

"We back the EEF's call for reform."

The ABI will outline its proposal for reforming the personal injury compensation system later this year.

A DWP spokesman said the government "remained committed to improving the current claims system to make it more efficient and cost-effective".

NU to launch new EL pilot
Norwich Union (NU) could have its own scheme based on the failed DWP employers' liability pilot scheme as early as next year.

Dominic Clayden, NU director of technical claims, said the company was preparing to launch its own pilot scheme in non-union workplaces.

Clayden said: "We were disappointed when a DWP pilot, held in conjunction with union and industry leaders, was not supported by unions earlier this year."