The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) has proposed to create a standardised pan-European personal pension product (PEPP).
The objective of the PEPP is to encourage EU citizens to save enough for retirement "by creating a simple, transparent, cost-effective and trustworthy product."
In a consultation paper, EIOPA said a "truly integrated and competitive" European internal market should be achieved by creating a "harmonised legal framework" for PEPPs.
"This framework would ensure a level playing field between all providers; remove existing barriers to cross-border business and, thus, facilitate cross-border offering of PEPPs to consumers; as well as facilitate a multi-pillar approach to pension saving," said EIOPA.
The three pillars consist of: a basic state pension (pillar one), an earnings-related pension (pillar two); and a voluntary private personal pension to supplement consumers' savings (pillar three).
EIOPA said pension products should be clearly distinguished from regular financial products. It outlined a number of characteristics of a PEPP.
It provides citizens with an income at retirement and savings should not be withdrawn prematurely unless the saver is willing to pay a penalty. It has a long-term nature and an investment strategy that takes into account the cyclical nature of the economy and ongoing changes in the financial market.
The consultation runs until 5 October 2015 and comments should be submitted in the provided template to [email protected].
The consultation follows a discussion paper in May 2013 and a preliminary report in February 2014.
EIOPA will also host a public event on 7 September 2015 in Frankfurt where stakeholders can contribute and share ideas on the creation of the PEPP.
EIOPA aims to submit its final advice to the European Commission in the beginning of 2016.