NETHERLANDS - A small group of Dutch politicians have put on hold their proposed amendments to pensions law that would see pensioners become board members of their own industry-wide pension fund boards.

Dutch MPs Fatma Koşer Kaja of liberal democrat party D66 and Stef Blok of liberal party VVD proposed legislation earlier this year which they hoped would give pensioners of industry-wide schemes a say on the pension fund board - a privilege fellow pensioners of company schemes already have - as well as on the scheme's ‘participation board.

But Willem Noordman, employers' representative at VB, the Dutch organisation for industry wide pension schemes, told members at an industry conference in The Hague yesterday Blok and Kaja had decided to delay pushing forward with their proposals following "intense discussions" with the Dutch pension fund organisation over the last few months.

Pension fund representative organisations opposed the plans which would have given pensioners increased say in pension schemes' governing bodies, arguing pensioners' interest would be disproportionate. (See earlier IPE story: Pension bodies oppose pensioners' increased say)

Noordman added he could not see a reason to give more rights to pensioners over other minority groups such as women or members of ethnic minorities.

A person familiar with the matter told IPE the Dutch Labour Foundation, a national consultative body whose members are the three peak trade union federations and three peak employers' associations in the Netherlands, has written to Blok and Kaja, requesting them for now to delay scheduling the proposal for active debate in government, until after the evaluation the covenant.

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