FINLAND - Matti Vuoria, chief executive of Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Co., has been elected chairman of Finland's new Securities Market Association.

Varma is one of the largest pension providers in Finland with €25.3bn in investments.

The association aims to "standardize the operating principles of listed companies, increase transparency of operations, boost information distribution and standardize the information provided for investors and shareholders," a press release issued by the association stated.

There was "a pressing need for self-regulation in the field".

In order to achieve this goal a preparatory working group has been established of which Timo Löyttyniemi, CEO of the Finnish State Pension Fund, is a member.

"As a pension fund we have an interest in developing high standards on corporate governance," Löyttyniemi told IPE.

Jaakko Raulo from OMX financial services company and spokesman for the association confirmed that pension funds will be one group of organisations that will be invited to join the association, along with for example security dealers and the association of actuaries.

The association was established by the confederation of Finnish Industries EK, the Helsinki Stock Exchange Ltd. and the Central Chamber of Commerce.

"Developments in other Nordic countries like the adoption of a joint stock exchange list at the Nordic Exchange in October, have triggered the decision to establish the association now," Raulo explained. "It was felt that this was the right time."