Bennion: Better access to pensions for Brits living in the EU

UK Lib Dem Euro MP Phil Bennion welcomed today’s Employment Committee vote on the future of pension provisions in the EU.

The European Parliament report calls for a more coordinated approach to pensions, which would enable British citizens working abroad to transfer pensions more easily from one EU country to another.

While the EU does not decide how national governments run private and public sector pensions, the EU is increasingly assisting in the coordination of pension systems across borders.

 Phil Bennion MEP commented:

“There are currently an estimated 2 million British citizens living or working in another EU country, including around 435,000 pensioners.

“The report tackles a lot of the important obstacles which prevent Brits abroad from accessing their full pension entitlements, for example by preventing double taxation, reducing long vesting periods and ensuring that pensions are fully transferable. It also calls for better tracking services so that citizens can track their pension entitlements more easily across different EU Member States.

“But it is clear more has to be done to help the more than 2 million Brits who live and work in other EU countries, and who have a varying degree of pension provision based on local rules and the kind of employment contracts they are on. We also need to ensure better coordination of pensions for all the Brits who take advantage of the EU’s freedom of movement and retire abroad at the end of their careers, including the over 100,000 opting for Spain’s warmer weather.

“Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament and in government are fighting for fairer pensions, and working to ensure that people don’t fall through the net because of silly bureaucracy, lack of information, or legal loopholes.

“I now hope the Commission will revisit this, so that British citizens working in the EU and making contributions to pension systems are able to transfer them and access them properly when they return to the UK.” 

Notes to Editors:

 

The full Employment Committee draft report can be found here.

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//NONSGML+COMPARL+PE-500.477+01+DOC+PDF+V0//EN&language=EN

The European Commission White Paper on ‘Adequate, Safe and Sustainable Pensions’ can be found here:
http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2012:0055:FIN:EN:PDF 

In 2007 the European Commission proposed a Directive to improve the

acquisition and preservation of supplementary pension rights, but so far it has not been possible to reach the required unanimity in the Council.

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2007:0603:FIN:EN:PDF

 

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