"An increasing number of international companies are moving the activities of their Dutch pension fund to Belgium. Business climate is more attractive than in the Netherlands." That is what 'Het Financieel Dagblad', a leading daily in the Netherlands, wrote last Monday.
Among others, Aon, a risk consultant and insurance broker, is apparently moving the activities of the Dutch pension scheme to Belgium.
Previously, Johnson & Johnson and the Belgian financial service provider Euroclear had announced shifting their Dutch pension scheme.
Moving a pension scheme is possible since 2005, after the implementation of a new European Pension Act; however, companies did not seem to make use of it until now.
The debate indicates uncertainty in the Netherlands due to the long ongoing pension debate. Furthermore, certain requirements in Belgium are not as strict as the Dutch counterparts.
In particular for international companies, this is an appealing option, converging all pension schemes. This route is not an easy option for larger sector-wide pension funds such as ABP.