Netherlands strengthens pension fund with 31 million dollars

SABA/ST. EUSTATIUS--Government employers and Foundation Pension Fund Caribbean Netherlands PCN have agreed on measures to strengthen the pension fund with a capital injection of US $31 million.
 
The agreement is the result of talks between PCN and the Ministry of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations (BZK), the coordinating ministry on behalf of the Dutch cabinet.
 
As employer, the Dutch government feels responsible for the pensions of civil servants employed by Government Department Caribbean Netherlands RCN and of the public entities Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius and care institutions on these islands.
 
After preparations by the official top and board of PCN, State Secretary of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops officially approved the agreements made.
 
As a result of the agreement, PCN will receive a one-off amount of $25 million before the end of 2018, while during a period of six years, each year an additional one million will be transferred to the fund as an additional contribution.
 
The Netherlands is to strengthen PCN by a total of $31 million through a deposit from BZK. These amounts are in addition to the premiums paid by employers and employees collectively.
 
The reason for the capital investment is the fact that the fund had to deal with a number of specific, difficult circumstances since it was founded in 2010.
 
For example, PCN is a small pension fund that has to deal with financial markets in the United States. The fund is the only Dutch pension fund that is subject to regulations specifically written for the Caribbean Netherlands. Partly due to these specific characteristics, the fund has come into financial trouble, necessitating a reduction on the entitlements of pension benefits and pension entitlements of 3.5 per cent as per April 2017.
 
In the build-up to these agreements, the future-proofing of the fund was also examined, which will be discussed further with, among others, the trade unions.
 
Photo: Chairman of the Board of Pension Fund Caribbean Netherlands PCN Harald Linkels (left) and Director of Government Department Caribbean Netherlands RCN Jan Helmond signing the documents for a capital investment of US $31 million in the pension fund

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