19 February 2013

Ceemet, ECEG & industriAll Europe concerned regarding EU plans to regulate national occupational pensions

With regard to the discussion of an agenda for adequate, safe and sustainable pensions currently taking place in the European Parliament, Ceemet, ECEG and industriAll Europe share a concern regarding a suggestion to apply Solvency II-like own-funds requirement to occupational pensions provided by employers to their employees.

The increased costs that would follow from applying Sovency II like own-funds requirements to occupational pension schemes could lead to reduced company pensions or ending them altogether.

We also welcome amendments made in the European Parliament rejecting the establishment of equal competition between life insurance and occupational pension systems as the latter are not financial service providers and can therefore not be compared with life insurance providers. Occupational pensions were never meant to be sold on the open market and are only limited to employees of a certain company.

In general, employers and trade unions of chemical and manufacturing industries welcome plans to add more transparency to European pension schemes by creating an overview of existing schemes. We do not support, however, plans to make the schemes comparable via regulation due to the very unique national nature of the pension schemes.