Cross-border IORPs on agenda at key EU meeting

EUROPE - Karel van Hulle, the new head of the insurance unit of the European Commission, is to chair a key meeting with member states on the transposition of the pension fund directive this Friday in Brussels.

Top of the agenda are cross-border schemes, although all aspects of the directive will be tackled, said a Commission official who declined to be named. The official added that it was not known how many member states would attend.

The directive on Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision has under a year to be implemented into national legislation.

The aim of the meeting is to pinpoint areas where member states are having difficulties in implementing the directive are properly supported, a person close to the European Commission said.

Anne Maher, head of the Irish pensions regulator, has warned against lax transposition. She said it was up to regulators to make sure the directive did not descend into a mess.

The Italian economy ministry’s representative, Raffaele Capuano, told IPE that questions were likely to be on a very wide range of issues, but added he would like to find out more on the free circulation of funds.

“We like the idea, but it is more a problem of understanding well how it works,” Capuano said. He said he would be accompanied by a representative of the pension regulator, Covip.

The UK is to send a delegation from the Department of Work and Pensions.

A DWP spokesperson told IPE that Baroness Patricia Hollis of the House of Lords’ Pension Bill committee has made a statement, saying it was important to make cross-border provisions in the EU directive work.

She also stressed the need of a common understanding among member states.

Van Hulle was until August this year head of financial reporting and company law at the commission.

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