DENMARK - Pension contributions into Bankpension's scheme are set to rise by a quarter next year, as three separate companies join the DKK15bn (€2bn) labour-market plan.

The labour-market pension fund said in a statement: "In a time when the financial sector is under extreme pressure, we are proud to have a significant rise in membership."

The three new employers' schemes will bring a total of 2,300 new members to Bankpension. This includes 1,350 people from the scheme of Arbejdernes Landsbank, which opted to merge with Bankpension earlier this year.

Arbejdernes Landsbank said at the time that it saw new opportunities and significant economic advantages arising from the merger.

At the end of last year, Bankpension had 11,199 active members, and contributions were DKK732m.

Explaining why Bankpension was succeeding in attracting new schemes, chief executive Niels-Ole Ravn said: "In the financial sector, the financial crisis has created the background for change in several areas. As a result, a number of companies within the financial sector are considering where they should place their employees' pension scheme.

"Since Bankpension has solid knowledge regarding employees' need for pensions as well as insurance in the financial sector, we are a natural choice. Furthermore, Bankpension has an extremely solid financial situation."

The fund also said the fact that several businesses were still looking to it as their future pension provider emphasised that its focus on targeting pensions and life insurance at financial companies made sense.