NETHERLANDS - The €7bn occupational pension fund for doctors (SPH) and the €105bn pension provider PGGM have agreed to co-operate on pension administration, asset management and board support.

The two parties said the co-operation was aimed at continuing the present quality of service to SPH's 16,000 participants based on long-term cost-effectiveness.

Dick Willemse, chairman at the SPH, said: "The expertise and skills of PGGM guarantee continuity of service. The co-operation will allow us to keeping our identity and also creates a future-proof pension provision."

Martin van Rijn, chief executive at PGGM, added: "This co-operation improves our position in the pension sector in general and allows us to deliver a high-quality service against an affordable price.

"Sharing knowledge and co-operation is increasingly important for establishing a valuable future for everybody."

SPH is a mandatory occupational pension fund.

Doctors Pension Fund Services will continue as SPH's provider and assist in mapping out the optimal co-operation with PGGM, according to a PGGM spokeswoman.

PGGM is the pension provider for the €100bn healthcare scheme PFZW and manages the pension assets of more than 2.3m participants.

SPH and PGGM said they expected to sign the formal contract for co-operation this spring.