EUROPE – The EU’s proposed directive on the portability of supplementary pension rights is “very problematic” due to issues about tax and supervision, according to the European Parliament’s ‘rapporteur’ for the measure.

The proposal was unveiled in October last year after some delays and met with at best qualified support from the European Federation for Retirement Provision and outright hostility from German unions and the Dutch government.

Now Irish MEP Eoin Ryan says the plan leaves behind the key area of taxation and oversight.

“The proposed directive aims at improving portability of supplementary pension rights by removing obstacles to the freedom of movement of workers within the EU,” according to the Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee newsletter.

“Specifically, the proposal tackles the system of acquisition, transferability issues, preservation of dormant pension rights, disclosure and information, leaving behind however an important issue of tax treatment of cross-border contributions and transfers.

“Also, the proposal does not address the supervisory issues as defining the competent supervisory authority is at this stage very problematic.”

The draft directive indeed does not include any references to tax or supervision.

“If we expect workers to be mobile and flexible we cannot punish them if they change jobs. Pension rights must be fully transferable. This directive has been long overdue,” said Vladimir Spidla, the European employment and social affairs Commissioner, at the time of the launch.