NETHERLANDS - Loek Sibbing, chairman of the Dutch Foundation for Company Pension Funds or OPF, has called on the government to ease legislation and enable the creation of "multifunds".

Speaking at the organisation's annual congress in The Hague, Sibbing called for the introduction of multifunds - pension fund cooperatives within a sector with collective asset and fund management, but still retaining individual CAOs (collective labour agreements).

"Legislation hinders this at the moment," argued his colleague Benne van Popta, chairman of the Association of Industry-wide Pension Funds VB.

But Social Affairs minister Aart Jan de Geus told the event that he didn't really back the proposal.

De Geus also said that he expected the formation of the new government, which will be elected next Wednesday, to be very "difficult". He added he expected to remain in post "for the next six months".

Opinion polls show that a new government formed of an unusual coalition between the current ruling Christian Democrats, the labour party (PvdA) and the Socialist Party is not unlikely.

Furthermore, De Geus expressed worry about pension governance in a European perspective, saying: "There is much support in the chamber for the fact that we do not want to let erode our own governance form: we want to keep our system."

"There is still much work to do," he added, while announcing the new pension law will most likely be implemented from next year after all, as it will probably go through the senate in the last debate about the issue on December 5.