GERMANY - The number of occupational pension schemes would be much higher in Germany if employees were better informed, according to a survey by the Institute for Management and Economic Research (IMWF).

Approximately half of the 1,000 people surveyed by the IMWF said they had not received information from their employer on the possibilities of setting up an occupational pension scheme.

In Germany, employers are legally obliged to inform their staff about second-pillar pensions and set up a scheme - known as Entgeldumwandlung - in which part of the salary can be transferred if demanded by employees.

In those companies where a scheme has been set up, 85% of employees are participating.

The lack of information is especially pronounced among lower earnings groups, such as workers with net salaries of €1,000-€2,000, the IMWF said.

Another 47% said they were not "sufficiently informed" about possibilities regarding occupational pension provision.

More than 70% of those that had not received any information were not even aware they had a legal claim to information and a pension scheme on demand.

By far the largest number of people unaware of this right were the ones earning less than €1,000 after taxes - in this category, 80% said they were unaware of their rights.