IRELAND - The Pensions Board has agreed to extend the timeframe for defined benefit schemes to submit their funding proposals.
The Board had initially given schemes with deficits until next May to submit their proposals but said it would announce a new extended timeframe "shortly".
This decision follows the announcement, earlier today by Minister for Social Protection, Éamon Ó Cuív, that the government has decided to expedite the proposal to move to a "new" defined benefit pension scheme model as outlined in the National Pensions Framework.
The Framework, agreed by the government in March 2010, was proposed in recognition of the difficulties with the current design of DB schemes. The Department of Social Protection said it would now aim to introduce the Framework following legislative changes on 1 July 2011.
"During considerations for this new model the Department will look at issues regarding the governance of defined benefit schemes, the basis for the funding standard (including areas such as risk management, smoothing out effects of changes in the bond markets) and strategies for transitioning schemes to this new model," the Board said in a statement.
"A full consultation process will take place with all stakeholders including employers, trade unions and the pensions industry in developing this new model."
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