Yesterday, during a visit to their headquarters in Dublin, Janice Turner, the Joint Chair of the Association of Member Nominated Trustees (AMNT) and I gave a 45 minute presentation to the Irish Bank Officials Association (IBOA) National Executive Committee.
The IBOA represents 22,000 finance workers in the Republic and Northern Ireland. It has has been very supportive of the AMNT and its lay pension trustees NEC have played a key role in our growth. Their members are in Defined Benefit (DB) and Defined Contribution (DC) pensions schemes.
Being finance workers they are acutely aware of the value of pensions and the threats that all their schemes currently face. The employer pension "promise" and "covenant" is under attack. For example the UK regulated Banks suffer from unnecessary and damaging accounting standards while in the Republic there is also no equivalent of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF). This needs to be challenged.
I think that the IBOA committee members and officers appreciate that the AMNT is the only organisation that is run solely by member nominated pension trustees who want to not only defend and promote DB but also want to improve all DC schemes as well.
At some point in the future it would make sense to try and organise local pension training and briefings by the AMNT outside London.
Many thanks to the IBOA for the warm welcome and hospitality they showed to us during our visit.