The Italian association of private pension funds, Adepp, and its German counterpart – Arbeitsgemeinschaft berufsständischer Versorgungseinrichtugen (ABV) – will reinforce its international cooperation to seek to influence legislators and politicians on topics of common interest.

During a recent meeting held in Rome, the associations agreed to strengthen joint actions through a position paper on topics of interest to pension funds for professionals to be brought to the attention of the candidates in the European Parliament elections next June, Adepp said in a statement.

The two bodies reiterated the importance of working together in the EurelPro, a committee bringing together the social security institutions of professionals in Europe, within the European Social Security Systems Platform (ESIP), it added.

The presidents of the associations, Rudolf Henke and Alberto Oliveti, underlined the need to reinforce “international alliances” on social security and pensions for professionals, also to make members aware of the regulatory differences existing between the countries, Adepp said.

Discussions during the meeting in Rome revolved around the issue of pubic subsidies for first pillar pensions in Germany, the German government’s plan to turn the pay-as-you system into a partially funded pillar, starting to invest assets in equities (Generationenkapital reform) and to keep the pension level at 48% of the average wage in the medium to longer term.

A further issue discussed related to self-employed people, with the government in Germany planning to introduce “compulsory pension provisions with freedom of choice”, according to the governing coalition programme.

The Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs plans to bring forward a proposal that would “protect” existing pension systems, including those for professionals, by the new legislation, it added.

ABV has also been working on a proposal for a new supervisory regime to introduce quotas, and further qualitative requirements, for investments in asset classes, against a stricter regime currently in place that makes it hard to increase allocations to real estate or alternative investments, for example, according to the statement.

Adepp’s deputy chair Tiziana Stallone highlighted the “massive intervention by the state” over the years against the process of privatisation of pension funds for professionals (Casse di Previdenza), and the high amount of taxes paid by the schemes.

The 91 German pension funds for professional counts 1 million members and €280bn assets under management, while the 19 Italian private schemes count 1.6 million members and €103.8bn, as of 2022.

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