PensionsEurope has responded to the European Commission consultation on investor duties relating to integrating sustainability factors in investment decision-making. In our submission, we argue that there are many best practices and approaches of how pension funds consider sustainability factors. While pension funds increasingly will need to address societal expectations on responsible investment, we believe that a prescriptive, mandatory approach would not be able to take account of this diversity of existing approaches. You can read our response here.
EIOPA published the results of its 2017 IORP stress test on 13 December 2017 and made very strong allegations about the healthiness of IORPs based on its own theoretical model that has not been adopted by the EU or any member state. The actual prudential rules that are in place at national level do not support EIOPA’s findings. The differences in findings highlight how EIOPA’s model is not fit for purpose. Read more in the PensionsEurope press release.
According to PensionsEurope statistics 2017 our Member Associations represent:
- Pension funds: €3549 billion assets and 65 million Members and 27 million Beneficiaries;
- Book reserves: €334 billion assets and 10.2 million people;
- Group insurance: €61 billion assets and 7.7 million people;
- The 3rd pillar personal pensions: €139 billion assets and 16.3 million people.
You can find the PensionsEurope statistics 2017 here
PensionsEurope welcomes that the ECB, EIOPA, Eurostat, and OECD try to align their reporting standards for pension funds. We encourage them to align all the reporting standards together with the national competent authorities as much as possible. We support the principle to leave a lot of flexibility to the Member States in the process of data collection and distribution. A starting point should remain the so-called ‘one-stop-shop’-concept, and considering the amount of information already available, the NCAs should play a central role therein. Please find PensionsEurope answer to the EIOPA consultation here.
In our answer, PensionsEurope thanks the ECB for an open dialogue on streamlining statistical reporting requirements for pension funds, and taking many concerns by PensionsEurope into account so far. We also highlight our remaining concerns and stress that we are ready and willing to further provide our expertise to the ECB in order that the benefits of the new reporting requirements will outweigh the costs. Please find our general remarks here and specific comments here.
On 20 September 2017, PensionsEurope responded to the questionnaire on the Interim Report of the High-Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance. In our response, we make several suggestions on how to enhance pension funds’ role in sustainable finance and long-term investment. Pension funds are natural long-term investors and can play an important role in funding green projects, provided they are not unduly constrained by regulation. We have commented on ideas in the Interim Report that aim to improve information for investors through initiatives such as bond labels, a taxonomy of sustainable assets and corporate reporting. We highlight our concerns on the practicalities and usefulness of integrating ESG risks in stress tests. We also argue any reporting requirements for pension funds should focus on measurable and objective information, while imposing a proportionate additional administrative burden. Please find our response here.
The EU’s High-Level Expert Group on Sustainable finance published its early recommendations on 13 July. PensionsEurope welcomes the initiative and will work with members to respond to the public consultation that will be launched shortly and is expected to run until mid-September.
You can read our press release here.
Today, the European Commission has published a proposal for a Regulation on a Pan-European Personal Pension Product (PEPP). PensionsEurope welcomes the proposal as a way to increase the overall pension savings and as one of the building blocks of the Capital Markets Union.
You can find the press release here
8 June 2017 - Today, PensionsEurope presents two new papers at the PensionsEurope conference 2017:
You can find the press release here.
In its answer to the to the European Commission consultation on the operations of the European Supervisory Authorities, PensionsEurope e.g. stresses that the current powers and tools of the ESAs are more than sufficient related to IORPs. Taking into account the fact that IORPs are built on a foundation of national social, labour and tax law, they should be mainly supervised by national supervisory authorities.
PensionsEurope is not in favour of granting additional powers to EIOPA to require more information from IORPs. New requirements should be introduced only if the expected benefits clearly outweigh additional costs.
IORPs should not be treated as purely financial service providers. Their social function and the triangular relationship between an employee, an employer, and an IORP should be adequately acknowledged and supported by the ESAs.
The ESAs should refrain from impinging upon the right of initiative of the European Commission to come up with new legislative initiatives that go beyond the existing framework of the single rulebook. As an example, we would like to draw attention to the efforts of EIOPA towards a pan-European occupational DC framework (in the second pillar).
PensionsEurope finds that it was a good decision to create two stakeholder groups within EIOPA (the Insurance and Reinsurance Stakeholder Group (IRSG) and the Occupational Pensions Stakeholder Group (OPSG)). This division enables the OPSG to properly discuss issues relating to occupational pensions.