NORWAY - Sogn og Fjordane Energi AS (SFE), the Norwegian power company, is tendering a public contract for the provision of services to its occupational pension scheme.

Figures from SFE's latest annual report for 2007 revealed the firm runs a defined benefit (DB) pension plan, under the requirement to have a government TenestePension (OTP), with net pension obligations of NOK 22.5m (€2.8m) at December 31 2007.

A spokeswoman for SFE confirmed he existing pension scheme is provided by Kommunal Landspensjonskasse (KLP), one of Norway's largest life insurers, and the notice is part of an ordinary procedure to re-tender the contract to ensure it is receiving the best service, or establish whether providers can offer a "cheaper or better" service.

The tender notice revealed SFE is expecting to invite between three and 10 operators to tender for the contract, although participation is limited to life insurance companies and pension funds which have a registered public occupational pension scheme.

The deadline for submissions for the tender is August 22 20008, and the spokeswoman suggested a final appointment should be made towards the end of the year.

SFE manages 10 hydro-electric power stations and operates the national power grid in eight Norwegian municipalities.

The firm's decision to place the provision of pension scheme services out to tender follows similar actions by four Norwegian municipalities, Baerum, Ski, Skedsmo and Kongsvinger. (See earlier IPE articles: AFP contributions rose 12.4% in 2007)

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