Cross-border IORP schemes in operation fall by over 50% due to Brexit - EIOPA

The number of cross-border institutions for occupational retirement provision (IORP) schemes in operation in the European Economic Area (EEA) has fallen by more than 50 per cent since 2017.

According to a report by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) published today, 3 December, there were 73 active undertakings in 2017, compared to 33 today. It said the significant fall reflects the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union.

For example, 19 cross-border IORPs included in the 2017 report with the home country as the UK and 23 cross-border IORPs with sole host country as the UK – all with Ireland as the home country – are no longer recognised as cross-border IORPs under the definition given in the IORP Directive for cross-border activity.

The remaining differences in cross-border IORPs can be explained by the closure of four cross-border IORPs in Belgium and two in Lichtenstein, accompanied by the creation and/or activation of five cross-border IORPs in Belgium, two in Ireland and one in Cyprus.

Cross-border IORPs within the EEA have approximately 70,000 members and beneficiaries and manage assets worth around €11.3bn. This represents 0.2 per cent of all members and beneficiaries and 0.4 per cent of total assets of IORPs in the region. The majority of cross-border IORPs are defined benefit schemes. The report found, however, that the use of multi-employer cross-border IORPs are on the rise.

The report also found that most cross-border IORPs are still concentrated in a small number of countries but the number of host countries has grown since 2017.
Belgium remains the home country with the largest geographical spread of cross-border activities, covering 12 countries, while the Netherlands is the most active host country. A total of 14 member states do not benefit from the single market for IORPs.

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