NETHERLANDS - PensioenOpStand - a joint initiative of political youth organisations - has urged the Dutch Parliament to compel pension funds to increase transparency and improve communication to their participants, as it finalizes details of how to implement the recent Pensions Agreement.
The lobbying organisation fears that the proposed new pension arrangements come at the expense of younger workers, following "too high pension promises in the past".
PensioenOpStand has asked Parliament to legally limit the period pension funds can spread fluctuations of returns to three years, rather than the current five, and also inform their participants about any such changes, including expected rights cuts.
In addition, pension funds should be forced to tell their participants about the amount of paid contributions, which amount has been used for pension accrual and which would be used for for costs, according to the representative body.
It also said pension funds should be clear about the premium's share allocated to disability and surviving relatives benefits, and about the sum put aside for the mandated financial buffers.
PensioenOpStand further urged Parliament to enshrine in law that pension funds must apply the risk-free, or 'arbitrage-free', discount rate for accounting liabilities, in combination with a clear verifying entitlement for supervisor De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB).
In PensioenOpStand's opinion, the link between life expectancy and the retirement age for the state pension AOW must also be secured in the Pension Act.
PensioenOpStand is a co-operation of the youth organisations of the liberal party VVD, the green left-wing party GroenLinks, the religious right-wing party SGP, the liberal-democrat party D66 and the labour party PvdA.
The initiative to PensioenOpStand has been taken by the Alternative for Labour Union (AVV). Earlier in the year, it stated that pension funds were still basing their return projections on "unrealistic" growth predictions.