News release

The pension agreement, what’s next?

23 July 2019

The government, employers and employees (the social partners) have reached agreement on the strong elements of our current pension system that should remain and what needs to change with respect to how we currently accrue pension. Reaching a pension agreement brings us a step closer to a future-proof pension system.

Under the new pension system, pensions will more quickly reflect what is happening in the economy. This means that indexation of pensions will be more likely in good economic times. On the other hand, pensions will be more likely to be reduced in times of economic weakness.
Other elements of the agreement include a slower increase in the age of entitlement to state retirement (AOW) pension and self-employed people will have easier access to joining a pension fund.

End of the average pension contribution system
The average pension contribution system, under which everyone pays the same contribution for the same accrual of pension, will be scrapped. Employees aged around 45 years will soon accrue less pension with the same contribution. Compensation will be needed for this. The reverse applies to younger employees, who will accrue more pension with the same contribution. No further accrual of pension will take place in our pension fund, and no further contributions will be made. This does not mean that there will be no compensation for this arrangement between the generation groups in our fund. It is not yet clear how compensation should or could be effected.

Role of the pension funds in working out the general principles
The issues in the pension agreement now have to be worked out in more detail. A steering group consisting of employers, employees and the government will work on this. The pension funds will be involved in this. This means we still cannot tell you what exactly this pension agreement will mean for your pension. We will check to see whether the proposed detail will work out fairly and evenly for all our participants and indeed whether there will be an adequate pension for everyone.

Once the legislation is ready, the pension funds can make a start on the transition from the current pension rules to the new rules. This is known as the transition phase. The Minister has stated that he wants the legislation to be ready in 2021. So we expect to be able to start on the transition in 2022.

New calculation rules
New calculation rules are announced for pension funds every five years. This has been done by the Parameters Committee. From 1 January 2021, pension funds must apply a lower notional interest rate. The notional interest rate is the rate funds have to use to determine their financial position. The implications of this for the fund and the effect of the pension agreement are not yet clear. We will let you know as soon as things are more clear.

We will update you when there is news
The board of Stichting Pensioenfonds Staples is following these developments closely. Once the effects of future legislation on your pension scheme become more clear, we will of course be back in touch.