EIOPA has doubled the number of representatives for pension plan beneficiaries on its Occupational Pensions Stakeholder Group (OPSG), it announced this week.

The EU regulator for insurers and occupational pension funds increased the number of beneficiary representatives from four to eight, at the expense of academic, employee and industry association representation. Pension funds continue to have 10 representatives on the 30-strong OPSG.

“New appointments also reflect developments in EIOPA’s strategic priorities, demonstrating expertise in sustainable finance and fintech,” the authority said.

Flavia Micilotta, executive director of Eurosif, the European Sustainable Investment Forum, is one of 19 new members of the OPSG.

Other newcomers include:

  • Christian Lemaire, global head of retirement solutions at Amundi and named as a representative of the Amundi Pension Fund;
  • Olav Jones, deputy director general and director of economics and finance at InsuranceEurope; and
  • Sibylle Reichert, head of the Brussels office for PensioenFederatie, the Dutch pension fund association

Jerry Moriarty

Jerry Moriarty, vice chair of PensionsEurope and CEO of the Irish Association of Pension Funds, joins the OPSG for its new term

Jerry Moriarty, CEO of the Irish Association of Pension Funds, has also joined the group as a representative of PensionsEurope, of which he is vice-chair.

He effectively replaces Matti Leppälä, general secretary of PensionsEurope, who had served the maximum of two two-and-a-half year terms. He was chair of the OPSG. 

Other departures from the group include Janwillem Bouma, managing director of Shell’s Dutch pension funds and chair of PensionsEurope; Paul Brice, strategic adviser and trustee for RPMI Limited, the administration and trustee services arm of the UK railways pension scheme; and Laure Delahousse, deputy director general at the French asset management association AFG.

The new OPSG membership is effective 4 September, with the group due to have its first meeting in October.

The OPSG and its insurance counterpart advise EIOPA on regulation and the development of technical standards, guidelines and recommendations. They can also submit opinions and advice on any issue related to EIOPA’s tasks.

The European Commission has proposed strengthening the mandates of the stakeholder groups as part of its review of the three European supervisory authorities.

PensionsEurope has called for the Commission to be in charge of the process for selecting stakeholder group members, instead of the supervisory authorities.

Brexit rejig?

The new term of the OPSG overlaps with the UK’s departure from the EU, a situation EIOPA drew attention to in its call for applications earlier this year.

According to the EIOPA regulation, all members of its stakeholder groups must be nationals of a country in the EU or European Economic Area (EEA).

An EIOPA spokesperson told IPE that in case the UK and EU failed to reach a deal on the former’s withdrawal from the bloc, a UK national’s membership of the stakeholder group would be cut short.

In case a transition agreement is reached, “it depends on the final conditions of such an arrangement and its impact on the membership in the stakeholder groups of UK nationals if the membership can continue or not,” added the spokesperson.

“This can only and will be analysed by EIOPA when the details are known.”

Sue Lewis is a trustee director at UK master trust The People’s Pension and the only OPSG member exclusively identified as a UK national.

InsuranceEurope’s Jones is identified as a joint UK and Norway national. Norway is in the EEA.

The members of the incoming OPSG are listed in full here.