NETHERLANDS - The €5.5bn pension fund for medical consultants SPMS will increase its pension accrual by one-third in a bid to offer fully fledged pension arrangements.

Monica Odenthal, board member, said: "The current pension plan is a basic scheme, and our participants are expected to make additional arrangements themselves. However, as many participants fail to do so, they are facing a disappointingly low pension.

"Moreover, we are not sure whether we can continue the yearly indexation of 7% on average, given the current economic outlook."

Odenthal added that it was also unclear what the future benefits of the state pension AOW would be.

Another reason for the change is the expected limitation of the tax benefits for annuities, while tax benefits for pension contributions will remain, she said.

The pension contributions for the 7,350 participants of SPMS will also increase by one-third, which equates to approximately €7,000, according to Aliçen Düzgün, the scheme's financial planner.

The change will take effect on 1 January 2012, and all new entrants will be automatically subject to the new arrangements.

However, current participants can opt for continuing the present basic scheme.

Participants of SPMS are paying an average contribution of more than €20,000 a year.

SPMS had a coverage ratio of less than 109% in early August.