ABP heads for PUB

NETHERLANDS - The board of Europe's largest pension fund is close to implementing fundamental changes to its structure, to stave off regulatory pressure on its additional insurance products, Jaap Maassen said today.

Speaking at today's AEIP/EFRP conference on governance at the ABN Amro head office in Amsterdam, Maassen announced ABP's governing board is currently deciding whether it should be run as an API (General Pensions Organisation) or according to rules applied to a Pensions Execution Company (PUB).

"Our board feels strongly that we should not be an API, but we should be a PUB," said Maassen.

He added: "This is where the debate is now, but we are close to coming to a conclusion."

In March, the fund said any new structure must allow it to actively inform its participants of individual products, such as the new tax-friendly 'levensloop', or life course.

Calling it an "integral service", Maassen reiterated today the fund wants to provide to its clients offer pension products along with supplementary insurance products.

He argued fundamental changes in the form of the PUB are necessary for such an integral service provision.

Present legislation does not allow ABP to promote the levensloop scheme in any way and the scheme was last year fined by pensions watchdog De Nederlandsche Bank for overstepping the mark.

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