SWITZERLAND - Also Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse and Vevey-based food company Nestlé have agreed to give Swiss pension fund shareholders a degree of say over executive remuneration.

The news follows an earlier decision of banking group UBS to put its remuneration policy to the vote of shareholders, after the Swiss pension fund-owned asset manager Ethos, together with eight Swiss pension funds, filed a "Say on Pay" shareholder resolution in September. (See earlier IPE story: Swiss funds get say on UBS pay)

Ethos said in statement today following its dialogue with the companies, Credit Suisse Group, Nestlé and UBS have agreed to pro-actively submit their remuneration system or report to an advisory vote of the shareholders in advance of their annual general meeting (AGM).

"This is a step toward better self-regulation with regard to executive remuneration and enhanced shareholder democracy in Switzerland," the group said.

The organisation together with the eight pension funds, including Aargauische Pensionskasse and the pension fund of the city of Zurich, are still in talks with pharmaceuticals company Novartis and power and automation technologies firm ABB on introducing an advisory vote of their remuneration system.

Ethos recently established a support group to the 'Say on Pay' resolutions, which it says includes around 30 Swiss and non Swiss institutional investors with more than CHF250bn (€170bn) in asset under management, and includes international signatories such as the Swedish buffer fund Första AP-Fonden (AP1) and the UK's Railpen Investments.

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