NETHERLANDS - The €750m Dutch pension fund of Siemens has joined the large industry-wide metal scheme PME.

The €24bn pension fund for the metal and electro-technical engineering industry - also known as the Metalektro - confirmed it has taken over all pension claims of the 8,400 participants of the Stichting Pensioenfonds Siemens (SPS).

Siemens Netherlands had been exempted from mandatory participation in the industry-wide scheme and managed its own pension plan. Pensions supervisor De Nederlandsche Bank has said it will not object to the deal.

Sako Zeverijn, director of the SPS, said: "The transfer to PME offers the participants and pensioners a better foundation for the future. The management costs per participant will decrease, and PME has more options to managing risks in the long term."

He added that, after extensive consultation, participants of the SPS had responded positively to the proposed arrangement.

The SPS not only offered a pension to employees of Siemens itself but also to workers of affiliated companies, such as Siemens Industral Turbomachinery and Siemens Medical Solutions Diagnostics.

The Siemens scheme added 2,800 active participants, 1,600 pensioners and 4,000 deferred members to PME's 623,000 participants in total.

PME's coverage ratio was 97% at the end of February, while the SPS had a similar funding.