Pension reforms will put up premiums at many companies

Cabinet hopes of saving almost €3bn by reforming the corporate pension system will not be achieved if the new rules are brought in, sources have told Nos television.

The new system involves calculating the premiums workers and employers pay in a new way and this means the premiums will go up in many cases, the sources say. The cabinet had hoped to achieve the savings because the premiums would go down.

Ministers were due to take a decision on implementing the reforms last Friday but delayed the decision at the last moment. It is logical ‘to talk for longer about a complex subject like the pension system,’ prime minister Mark Rutte told reporters afterwards.


The home affairs ministry then asked civil service pension fund ABP to calculate the impact of the plans on government spending. Some three million civil servants are members of the fund.

The results showed the government would have to pay hundreds of millions of euros in extra premiums for civil service pensions – the opposite of the desired effect. Other pension funds would be similarly affected, Nos said.

The NRC said later on Wednesday its calculations show the pension reforms will cost the cabinet almost €4bn, rather than generate €2.9bn.

The savings the government is expecting ‘have melted like snow in the sunshine,’ one source told the paper.

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