Regulation could expand pensions offer

NEW rules regulating pension schemes for the first time in the island could open up new business opportunities for local firms.

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The final version of a new pensions supervisory framework is due to be published by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission this week, in advance of tomorrow’s deadline to comply with the introduction of the OECD’s Common Reporting Standard.

Stephen Ainsworth, president of the Guernsey Association of Pension Providers, said the industry was looking forward to the opportunity to develop international pension plans.

‘There has been a barrier to promoting international pension products,’ he said.

‘There is a large market for international corporate pensions, particularly for large multinational companies with an international workforce. But without a full regulatory regime, people will be nervous about the Guernsey regime and look to other jurisdictions.

‘Most of the industry is very much in favour of the move, though at a technical level we think there are areas in the draft consultation which could be improved.’

Paul Buckle, head of the pensions practice in Guernsey for law firm Walkers, chaired an industry panel some 17 years ago which concluded that pension regulation was needed in the island.