Sunday 22 April 2018

Unions back Eircom's pension shortfall plans

John Mulligan

Eircom's unions have overwhelmingly backed measures aimed at tackling an existing shortfall as well as future funding of the group's pension scheme.

In February, Eircom, now owned by Singapore's ST Telemedia, said it had reached agreement in principle to address a large pension deficit at its defined benefit scheme.

Workers at four unions within Eircom recently gave the go-ahead for the moves, which include imposing agreed limits on the future growth of pensionable pay.

Eircom has also agreed to increase its annual contributions to the scheme from 7.8pc of pay to at least 8.5pc, and the amount will be subject to a floor for three years.

Eircom expects the deficit at the scheme to be eliminated and the risks within the scheme to be significantly reduced.

Eircom's pension deficit stood at €407m at the end of last December, and it had unrecognised actuarial losses of €285m.

Eircom's chief financial officer Peter Cross welcomed the decision by workers to back the changes, and described the move as a "significant milestone" for the group.

Irish Independent

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