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Bernardino given second term at EIOPA as executive director departs

Gabriel Bernardino’s term as chairman of the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) has been extended until 2021.

In a statement, EIOPA said the decision to offer Bernardino a second five-year term was due to his successes since the supervisor was launched in 2011.

The decision by the board of supervisors is still subject to approval by the European Parliament’s economic and monetary affairs committee (ECON), which has the power to reject the appointment.

In contrast to last week’s decision by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) to extend the terms of its executive director and chairman by a further five years, EIOPA has only asked Bernardino to stay until 2021.

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A spokeswoman for EIOPA confirmed that Carlos Montalvo Rebuelta would not be seeking a second term as executive director.

Montalvo has been EIOPA’s executive director since 2011.

Prior to that, he was secretary general of its predecessor, the Committee of Insurance and Occupational Pensions Supervisors (CEIOPS).

The supervisor has now launched a recruitment process to find a replacement.

Bernardino also began his European career at CEIOPS, being elected its chairman in 2009.

He was shortlisted as a candidate to be the new supervisor’s chairman and was confirmed in the role by ECON in February 2011, taking up the position three months after the European Supervisory Authorities of EIOPA, ESMA and the European Banking Authority were formally established.

Prior to taking on the role of chairman at CEIOPS, Bernardino was director general for development and institutional relations at the Instituto de Seguros de Portugal (ISP), which he joined in 1989.

Bernardino, as the public face of EIOPA, has often been criticised for the supervisor’s work on the holistic balance sheet (HBS) and, more recently, conducting stress tests of the pensions sector.

In an interview with IPE last year, he emphasised that EIOPA was not rigid in its views, and that the then-ongoing HBS consultation – considering six potential approaches – was a means of gathering industry feedback.

“You need to have an idea, but the one I have is not a choice between framework one or framework six – it is to listen,” he said at the time.

“We are trying to include all the [pensions] mechanisms we have in the different countries. No country will have it all, but the tool can provide added value.”

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