NETHERLANDS - Hans Hoogervorst, the new chairman of the Dutch financial markets authority and pension regulator (AFM) has warned the Dutch pension sector needs to step up its transparency efforts to members.

Speaking at the first AFM pension conference in Amsterdam last Friday, Hoogervorst, the former minister of health in the Balkenende-II government - which fell last year - said his authority will emphasise pension funds' information duty to members in 2008.

However, the former Dutch health minister added: "For us, it is not about large fines, and naming and shaming," arguing the AFM will look more towards a transfer of standards.

AFM was given the task of ensuring pension funds maintain proper communication with their members, when new pension law came into effect at the beginning of this year.

Also speaking at the conference was Joanne Kellermann, the newly-appointed successor of the late Dirk Witteveen, at the Dutch central bank and pension supervisor DNB.

Kellermann, responsible for supervising the pension funds, insurers, trust and money transaction offices and investment corporations, again highlighted pension fund governance and continuity analysis as areas of importance for the regulator in its supervision of pension funds in 2008.

Earlier last month, the DNB had already stated it wants corporate pension funds to increase their efforts in implementing cost-saving measures and complying with governance requirements. (See earlier IPE story: Dutch regulator demands funds step up work)

The DNB also wants pension funds to implement or augment a 'continuity analysis', part of the new financial assessment framework nFTK, as a way of gaining insight into the financial effects of unexpected events during the next 15 years.

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