NETHERLANDS - Pension fund trade bodies have urged the next Dutch government to take measures to make the pension fund system not only financially sustainable, but feasible and easy to explain.

In a letter to the future cabinet negotiator, VB, UvB and OPF made a number of recommendations on how the new government might tackle current pension issues and at the same time restore confidence in the pension system.

They called on lawmakers to revise the Financieel Toezichtskader framework (FTK) to allow the system to better respond to changing demographics and widely varying returns, and said the FTK should be adjusted so pension contracts show "exactly who bears what risks", with "no concealed shift of current losses to the future".

They urged the future government to take a principle-based approach, saying it was "unwise to capture everything in detailed regulation", given the rapid changes in the financial sector.

They also said any changes to pensions schemes must ultimately be understood and accepted by their members.

VB, UvB and OPF said the mandatory participation of companies in industry-wide pension schemes should be kept in place.

They also asked the future government to respect pension funds' previously proposed self-regulation on investment policy, which is supported by De Nederlandsche Bank.