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EU pensions committee admits “shortcomings”

EUROPE – CEIOPS, the Committee of European Insurance and Pension Supervisors, says there have been “unavoidable shortcomings” as it works on the EU Solvency II project for insurance.

“The challenging deadlines for delivering the advice on the Solvency II project, together with the complexity of this task, entailed significant constraints, and some unavoidable shortcomings in the internal process,” writes Secretary General Alberto Corinti in the committee’s new annual report.

Solvency II, a review of the prudential supervision of insurance in Europe, is CEIOPS’ “biggest and most important task”.

“Resources continue to lag behind need,” added chairman Henrik Bjerre-Nielsen.

“This year the Committee’s range and depth of activities have expanded significantly. It has undertaken a vast workload,” Bjerre-Nielsen wrote. Earlier this week Bjerre-Nielsen reiterated his view that pension funds would eventually come under Solvency II.

He added in the report: “We remain determined to fulfil our role under the ‘Lamfalussy’ organisational structure for European financial services committees.

“To do this we must ensure that our own organisational structure and tools keep pace, not just with incoming demand but with the ability to provide support at CEIOPS’ own initiative.”

Mihaly Erdos, chair of CEIOPS’ Occupational Pensions Committee, said the adoption of the so-called Budapest Protocol on cooperation in the context of the pension fund directive was a “major step forward” in supervisory convergence. It had implications not only for supervisors but for the whole pensions industry.

Going forward, the OPC plans to concentrate on the collection of experience with the implementation of the directive, the report said.

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