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Netherlands’ Rutte proposes pension boards

NETHERLANDS - The Dutch minister for social security, Mark Rutte, has put forward the idea of setting up boards of commissioners at pension funds – though there is to be no change to the PVK.

Rutte's spokesman, Peter Van Meenen, told IPE that the minister has made two speeches recently in which he called on pension funds to reassess the current performance of their boards.

Van Meenen said Rutte proposed that pension funds should try to re-establish the trust in their organisations by increasing the transparency and adequate governance of their organisations.

One possible way of combating the current problems in the industry was to set up a kind of board of commissioners able to respond to changing investment requirements.

The spokesman said it was not intended to change the role of the pension and insurance industry regulator, the Pensioen- & Verzekeringskamer.

PVK spokesman Louk van Dalen said that the regulator did not see the proposal as a threat to its current position – and that the PVK would comply with any legal changes.

As far as the PVK understands, Rutte is proposing setting up a board of commissioners within the pension funds themselves, not to be seen as a supervisory board above all existing institutions.

Rutte's proposal, according to Van Dalen, should be seen as a possible step towards more transparency and effective management within the pension funds themselves.

Herman Bots, consultant and senior financial analyst at pension consulting firm Financial Services Amsterdam said that Rutte’s proposal would not create a new independent supervisory board, controlling the pension funds and/or the PVK.

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