FINLAND - The representative employee and employer organisations tasked with negotiating on the reform of the pension investment rules in Finland has postponed its deadline for negotiations until September.
The Permanent Negotiating Group of the Finnish social partners, which includes representatives from various pension institutions and plays a significant role in shaping pension reform, is in the midst of negotiations over overall revision of the investment rules.
Strict solvency rules in Finland mean pension funds’ investments are dependent on their solvency ratio, preventing them from increasing their exposure to asset classes considered to be ‘high risk’. Reform of solvency regulations is just one of the aspects being considered as part of the negotiations.
The group was due to complete negotiations by June 24 but has rescheduled its meeting for September 2.
A spokesperson for Ilmarinen Mutual Pension Insurance Company, whose managing director Kari Puro chairs the group, said: “They are going to continue these negotiations during the summer and the decision will be made only in the Autumn. They were to meet on June 20 and now they have cancelled the meeting and they will meet only in the beginning of September.”
Matti Leppala, director, international and legal affairs at the Finnish Pension Alliance (TELA), said the negotiating group had cited a Ministry of Finance proposal for a new model for the calculation of interest rates as one reason for postponing the negotiation deadline.
“There are many issues that are still unclear and it is very difficult to say what the outcome will be,” he said. “At any rate, we have proposed that the result would include also the reform of real estate investment. And if the negotiating group will agree on this issue, the government will most likely draft new legislation and other rules accordingly.”
Last week, the Ministry of Finance announced it had pushed back its deadline for its final report of reform to real estate investment in Finland by six months, to November 30.
The Ministry set up a working group last year to assess improvements to the Finnish Act on Real Estate Funds and was due to produce its final report, preferably in the form of a government bill, by the end of May.
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