ITALY - Economic development minister Pierluigi Bersani has claimed that his call for the government to act prior to the launch of the pension reforms in January 2007 were misconstrued by labour minister Cesare Damiano.
The ministers battled their arguments out in the Italian media just one day after an agreement to bring the reform forward by a year was signed between the government and the trade unions.
In an interview with La Repubblica, Bersani said preliminary investigations into the pensions issue should be carried out before the reform is launched. "We cannot sit on our hands until January 2007 then expect everything to fall into place at the negotiating table," he said.
In other reports, seemingly in response to this claim, Damiano had an explosive reaction. "I do not agree with the idea of anticipating the negotiations on pensions," he said. "The government must respect the terms of the agreement signed."
In answer, Bersani's spokesperson Stefano Di Traglia issued a statement that the ministers had said the same thing.
Both said the timelines set out in the agreement must be adhered to, but meanwhile reports on preliminary outlines could be drawn up, thus making the reform more efficient, he stated.
The People's Pension, Atlas Master Trust and The Cheviot Trust have been granted authorisation from The Pensions Regulator (TPR), taking the total number of authorised master trusts to 18.
Pension schemes have been warned they may now face a more challenging legal test if they wish to fix drafting errors.
The Greene King Pension Scheme has appointed XPS Pensions as its actuarial and investment adviser following a competitive tender process.
Professional Pensions has compiled a list charting the progress of master trust authorisation. View our list in full here...