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Published on 03 July 2023

The new pension system: Here's how it works

New rules for pensions are on the way: 'the new pension system'. The previous rules worked well for years, but now they’re no longer appropriate, for example because people no longer stay with the same employer for their entire working life. We’re also getting older, which means we enjoy our retirement for longer. And then there's the matter of increasing our pensions. Although the economy has been doing well in recent years, pensions could often not increase along with it. That feels unfair.

The authorities have given everything the green light. The unions, the employers, and of course the pension funds, can now proceed to define the precise details of the new rules. In December 2022, the Dutch House of Representative approved the Future of Pensions Act (Wtp), and in spring 2023 the Senate did so too. This means that the new act, which establishes the new pension system, came into force on 1 July 2023.

The unions, employers, and pension funds have until 1 January 2028 at the latest to adapt the pension arrangements to comply with the new legislation, although they can also do so sooner. That date may sound a long way off, but making the changes takes a lot of time. That's why the social partners – i.e. the representatives of the employers and employees – are already engaged in negotiations behind the scenes. Bpf Koopvaardij is also hard at work. The social partners aim to have resolved all the problems by the end of this year. Once the arrangements are definitive, we will inform you.

Your views on the new system
Employers and employees decide jointly on the arrangements regarding the new pension rules. That doesn't of course mean that all the employers and employees are present round the table; that's a smaller group of people. On behalf of the employers, it means the employers' organisations; for the employees, it’s the unions. Do you also want to have a say about the new system? Then join a union.

You can also have your say about the new rules if you're a former member or receive a pension from Bpf Koopvaardij. Social partners are legally obliged to submit the agreed arrangements to associations of pensioners or associations of former members in the sector. This is referred to as 'the right to be heard'. These associations are entitled to express an opinion on the arrangements. Are you a member of one of the associations? Then point out that it has the right to be heard. That will allow the association to communicate its views or concerns to the social partners.

Want to know more?
Bpf Koopvaardij thinks it’s important for members to know what exactly is going on because a lot happens behind the scenes. Meetings for members will therefore be held this autumn at which Bpf Koopvaardij will provide information on the arrangements made and on what will change. You can also find information on our page New pension system.