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Maastricht University to develop cross-border pensions register

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Maastricht University in the Netherlands has announced it will develop a register for cross-border pension rights between the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium as a pilot for a EU-wide facility.

The tracking system will show how much cross-border workers should accrue to achieve the desired pension level, according to Anouk Bollen, director of ITEM, the university’s research centre for cross-border co-operation and mobility.

She said the new website would draw its data from the Dutch and Belgian central registers – Mijn Pensioenoverzicht.nl and Mypension.be, respectively.

She added that a co-operation with Osnabrück University would aim to clarify how German second-pillar data could be added, “as Germany lacks a central tracking system, and many pensions are on corporate balance sheets and also paid by companies”. 

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The planned website would be shaped like the TTYPE, the European tracking system currently being developed by a group of pension providers including APG, PGGM, MN and Syntrus Achmea.

The European Commission will partly finance the project, which will ultimately cover all EU member states.

Bollen said the project would serve as a pilot for a European pensions register, “as setting up such a facility must start somewhere because involving all member states would take a very long time”.

She added that cross-border rights posed an urgent problem in the border area of the three countries, and that Maastricht University already had much experience with cross-border issues.

More than 100,000 Dutch, Belgian and German employees work in bordering countries, according to data from Statistics Netherlands (CBS).

Bollen said the project would be carried out in co-operation with TTYPE, the Dutch pensions register, as well as Dutch providers.

She suggested it would take at least three years before the website could be operational.

The Netherlands introduced a pensions tracking system – a joint initiative of pension funds, insurers and the social security bank SVB – in 2011.

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