Sweden’s pension fund for the trade sector SH Pension has announced it is transferring its members’ private pension savings to commercial provider SPP, having become obliged to relinquish the business as part of its conversion to an occupational pension company under country’s new IORP II regime.

Staffan Hansén, chief executive officer of SPP – the Swedish pensions and investment unit of Norway’s Storebrand – said: “We are happy about being trusted and to be able to contribute both our expertise and a solution that benefits both the customers, SH Pension and SPP.”

The deal involves around 1,300 pension plans with a total of some SEK300m (€28.5m) of assets.

Annelie Helsing, the new CEO of SH Pension, which has SEK6bn of assets, said: “For those customers who have privately-owned pension insurance, we see a good recipient in SPP which has good prospects of securing a long-term solution for the insured.”

SPP said the transaction was due to be completed this year, but still remained subject to a favourable vote at SH Pension’s general meeting, as well as approval from the Swedish FSA (Finansinspektionen).

Helsing said: “We have worked diligently to find a solution to protect the interests of all our members.”

SH Pension has been going through structural changes in preparation to operate under Sweden’s new regulatory regime based on the EU’s IORP II directive, as opposed to the Solvency II-based framework governing many Swedish pension providers.

The country’s financial watchdog recently appealed to the Finance Ministry, asking for transitional provisions to be added to legislation translating the IORP II directive into the domestic rulebook.

It warned that occupational pension funds converting to occupation pension company (tjästepensionsföretag) status could otherwise face liquidation due to a lack of capital as a result of COVID-buffeted financial markets.

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