HUNGARY - The Hungarian pension fund association Stabilitas has said that the majority of its members want to remain within the second pillar and are willing to make “donations” to save it from collapse.

In the months since the government essentially nationalised second-pillar pensions assets last year, a number of Hungarian schemes have announced their closure, while others have struggled on.

Last month, Stabilitas made a plea to its members to make voluntary additional contributions, or “donations”, to keep these remaining funds afloat.

After conducting a “non-representative” online survey in March, the association estimated that nearly three-quarters of its approximately 100,000 members wished to remain in the second pillar. 

It added that only 4% of respondents had decided to transfer fully into the first-pillar pensions system and that another 23% were undecided, “confirming” customer feedback received by Hungarian pension funds.

According to local press reports, one-quarter of fund members might have already left the system since the survey was held.

But Stabilitas said that, according to its online survey, more than 70% of members wanting to stay said they supported the association’s request for voluntary donations, while only 11% “clearly rejected” the idea.

It also said many fund members wanted to ensure the existence of an alternative to the public pension system.

Stabilitas said its work had been “complicated” by the fact the current regulatory environment was “inconsistent” and that a number of rules were “unclear”.