GERMANY - Munich-based car manufacturer Bayerische Motoren Werke (BMW) is preparing to make a second pensions transfer to its newly-launched contractual trust arrangement (CTA).

A spokesman of the carmaker confirmed this morning a first transfer - worth approximately a third of the €4.5bn BMW wants to transfer to the CTA in three steps - had been done in the second quarter of this year.

He added the company was now preparing for a second transfer, though declined to comment on when this would take place.

In the company's third quarter results, released earlier this week, BMW commented its financial reserves for pensions had decreased by 46.1% to €2.494bn since the end of last year.

"This is mainly the result of the transfer of pension liabilities to the newly-created BMW Trust e.V. in Munich within the framework of a CTA," stated the report.

BMW announced last year it wanted to set up an external pension vehicle (See earlier IPE story: BMW mulls pension transfer), though decided earlier this year it would set up a CTA.

A CTA is essentially a book-reserve funded programme which enables the corporate sponsor to leave pension assets integrated within the company's assets, though legally committing them to pension liabilities.

Several German blue-chip companies such as Siemens and MAN have already moved the CTA over to a Pensionsfonds since legislative changes in 2006 deregulated the external Pensionsfonds vehicle.

Consultants expect a more widespread move to Pensionsfonds in the next year.

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