EUROPE - The detailed methodology for the quantitative impact study (QIS) on the 'holistic balance sheet' proposal for European occupational pension funds has been largely "cut and paste" from Solvency II for insurers, the Association of Consulting Actuaries (ACA) has claimed.

The association expressed "grave disquiet" over the content of the consultation paper on the QIS launched last month by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA).

Paul Kelly, chairman of the ACA's International Committee, denounced the "hideously complex" set of calculations with "little room for professional judgement".

"Indeed," he added, "EIOPA seems to believe there is only a restricted role for actuaries in this process."

Kelly also argued that the QIS failed to assess the "quantitative" aspects of the holistic balance sheet approach and that any assessment of the "main impact" - such as how much extra cash companies would need to contribute - had been left to the European Commission to determine.

"It is certainly 'quantitative', but it only deals with the technical specifications for calculating the elements of the system, [such as] technical provisions or solvency margins.

"No QIS on the impact of Solvency II on UK pensions is in any way adequate without an assessment of how it impacts on the large slices of the British economy ultimately owned by our EU partners - particularly French and German multinationals.

"It is concerning that the rules view Greek and German state bonds as equally secure."

Earlier this week, IPE also reported on the EIOPA stakeholders group's draft response to the consultation paper.

In its draft response, the group also claims that the proposed document fails to measure the "real" impact, or shed light on a supervisory prudential framework.

Without a prudential framework, it says, it will be unclear how IORPs will react or what the consequences will be for the economy.