Governing Board of the Pension Fund

The Governing Board of the Pension Fund held its 154th and 155th meetings on 13 and 26 June 2007 respectively.

At the first of these two meetings, the Governing Board Chairman Professor F. Ferrini stated that a steering committee had been set up, under his own chairmanship, to examine the Fund’s IT issues. This Committee had decided to avail itself of the consultancy services of an independent audit company with recognised expertise in the IT field and that the latter should undertake a study of the Fund’s present IT situation, review its operational needs, offer a comparative analysis of the different solutions and submit an overall report and conclusions on the advantages and disadvantages of the various possible solutions.

At the same meeting, the Governing Board was informed of the activities of the Working Group on Actuarial Matters. The Board heard that the results of the three-yearly actuarial review would be presented at its September meeting and that the Board’s recommendations resulting from that meeting would be submitted to the December meetings of the Finance Committee and Council.

The Administrator then presented a comparison between the CERN Pension Fund and a sample of Swiss pension funds, from which it could be concluded that, over each of the past five years taken separately, the CERN Pension Fund had outperformed the average performance of those funds.

The Administration submitted to the Board a draft proposal on investment principles. It was the wish of the present Governing Board to entrust this draft proposal to the next Governing Board as a working document, while at the same time welcoming any comments from its current members.

Finally, the Board heard a report from the Administrator on his participation in the 5th workshop on Pensions in International Organisations. The main message emerging from his report was that the CERN Pension Fund is not the only one currently engaged in an overall review of its rules and regulations.

The Governing Board’s meeting on 26 June was entirely devoted to a report by the Chairman on the decisions taken by the CERN Finance Committee and Council at their June meetings and on the consequences of those decisions on the present Governing Board’s timetable of actions. He reported that the Council had decided to appoint D.-O. Riska as member of the Governing Board from 1 July 2007 until the establishment of the new Governing Board, scheduled for 1 October 2007, and M. J. Simoen as member of the Investment Committee until the implementation of the Fund’s new governance structure.

The CERN Council had unanimously approved the new governance of the Fund as well as the resulting amendments to the Fund’s Rules and Regulations with respect to the composition of the Governing Board, which would come into force on 1 October 2007. These amendments will, as is customary, be published in the CERN Bulletin. In that regard, the Council had mandated the present Governing Board to put forward the names of the two professional members of the future Board specialised in pension fund matters. That would be done at the Board’s next meeting.

The main focus of the document "Governance principles and structure" was to reaffirm and reinforce the Fund’s autonomous operation and to clarify the roles and responsibilities of the various parties involved in the Fund’s operations and activities (including ESO) in order for the latter to fulfil their duties in optimum fashion.

Professor Ferrini also reported that the Council had taken note of the report by Mercer on the comparison of the Fund with other comparable European pension funds.

The Governing Board bade farewell to P. Levaux and F. Bello, expressing its warm gratitude and appreciation to them both for all their efforts in the service of the CERN Pension Fund. Applause ensued.

The Governing Board noted, with regret, the deaths of the following beneficiaries: Mrs A. Darx-Dubois et Mr R. Perrin.