ExxonMobil's Dutch pension fund exploring move to Belgium
The €2.5bn Dutch pension fund of energy giant ExxonMobil has said it is considering to join its Belgian sister scheme in setting up a cross-border pension fund.
It said an initial study had shown that placing its pension arrangements in a joint scheme could cut implementation costs considerably, without any change in the plan or pension obligation.
Since 2012, ExxonMobil has maintained two pension funds in the Benelux region: the Stichting Pensioenfonds Protector in the Netherlands and the ExxonMobil OFP in Belgium.
Protector said it intended to establish a cross-border scheme in Belgium by extending the current ExxonMobil OFP into an IORP.
The Dutch scheme has almost 5,000 active participants and pensioners.
Its coverage ratio at year-end was 131.6%.
The pension fund reported a total return on investments of 25.5% for 2014.
At the start of 2015, it replaced its final salary plan with average salary arrangements with full indexation.
A number of Dutch pension funds are currently considering the possibility of joining or establishing a pan-European pensions vehicle in Belgium due to increasing regulatory pressure in the Netherlands, cheaper supervision and VAT exemption.
Pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson recently completed the transfer of its Dutch pension fund to Belgium after a three-year long process.
Last year, 200 employees and pensioners of the Dutch branch of financial services provider Euroclear joined the Brussels-based company scheme Euroclear Pension Fund OFP.