The new discussion paper, "How pension funds contribute to jobs and growth in Europe – and how to strengthen their participation in the Capital Markets Union", sets out PensionsEurope’s view on the Capital Markets Union, highlighting what pension funds need to overcome the obstacles facing longterm investors, like pension funds, in Europe.
Matti Leppälä, Secretary General/ CEO, PensionsEurope, said: “PensionsEurope’s member organisations cover the workplace pensions of about 62 million European citizens representing approximately 89.5 trillion of assets and play an important social role in the European economy, by helping to ensure European citizens have an adequate retirement income. “But pension funds also play a crucial role as long-term investors in the European economy, contributing capital to growth and jobs, and this new paper investigates what should be done to increase the flow of capital from pension funds to European projects and companies and strengthen European pension funds’ participation in the Capital Markets Union.”
Joanne Segars, Chair of PensionsEurope, commented: “PensionsEurope supports the European Commission’s view of a Capital Markets Union, and believes pension funds, and pension savers, have much to gain from a CMU that makes it easier to invest for the long-term and across borders. “However, currently pension funds face a mismatch between their own long-term investment horizons and the predominately short-term regulatory focus. It is vital that the EU recognises the key role pension funds play as major institutional investors, and addresses these barriers.
“This PensionsEurope discussion paper calls on policy makers to refrain from imposing inappropriate quantitative measures or capital requirements on pension funds, which would have negative effects on their investment capabilities, and consequently on the goals of the CMU. “It’s also important that national governments and the EU create attractive and suitable investment opportunities for pension funds, whilst ensuring there is an appropriate regulatory balance – it is not for pension funds to amend their investment strategies simply to align them with public policy.”
All these remarks were done during the industry group’s annual conference in Brussels, were Segars also warned that the EIOPA's proposed holistic balance sheet would be “disastrous” for all affected IORPs and the goals the Commission hoped to achieve by launching the CMU. She also questioned the need for EIOPA’s current stress tests and said the supervisor had yet to make the case for enhanced solvency rules that could follow on. (IPE)
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