Committee to take evidence on EU Pensions Policy

18 April 2012

Monday 23 April 2012 at the House of Commons (Meeting room to be confirmed)

At 4.30 pm

European Commission:

  • Directorate-General for the Internal Market and Services (DG Markt) - Karel Van Hulle, Head of the Insurance and Pensions Unit
  • Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (DG Empl) - Ralf Jacob, Head of Unit for Active Ageing, Pensions, Healthcare, and Social Services

The Work and Pensions Committee will take oral evidence on the implications for pensions in the UK of current EU pension policy proposals including:

  • The EC White Paper on Pensions
  • The possible application of Solvency II to pensions and reform of the Directive on Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision (IORP)

Further information
The EC’s White Paper on Adequate, Safe and Sustainable Pensions was published on 16 February 2012. It describes the challenges the EU is facing due to its ageing population and sets out 20 action points for the EU and member states.

The IORP Directive was implemented in the UK in 2006. It provides a framework for the operation and supervision of occupational schemes, including how they should be administered, and their funding and investment rules. The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA – the EU regulatory body) has carried out a consultation on reform of the Directive. This focused on: the scope of the  Directive; facilitating cross-border business; introducing risk-based supervision of pension schemes; and specific measures for defined contribution schemes. Its “final advice” to the Commission on the review of the Directive was published on 15 February 2012.

Solvency II is a fundamental review of the capital adequacy regime for the European insurance industry. It aims to establish a revised set of EU-wide capital requirements and risk management standards that will replace the current solvency requirements. The EC is considering whether a similar approach should be applied to pensions as part of the reform of the IORP Directive.

Image: iStockphoto

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