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India: Govt urged to resolve uncertainty over regulation of pension products

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Jun 2017

India Pensions & Annuities Regulation

The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) is seeking clarification from the government on several questions related to the regulation of pension products. The move is seen as an attempt to bring all pension products under the purview of a single regulator.
 
   Currently, only the National Pension System is regulated by the PFRDA. Pension products sold by insurers are overseen by the IRDAI while those sold by mutual funds are supervised by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
 
   PFRDA, which was established with the intent of regulating pure-play pension products, has for long lobbied for the exclusive right to be the watchdog for all pension offerings. Further, it wants the word “pension” to be attached to only those products which it approves and regulates.
 
Single regulator for all pension products?
Mr Hemant Contractor, Chairman of PFRDA, told Moneycontrol that the pension authority is hopeful that the government would decide on a single regulator for all pension products.
 
   PFRDA’s latest move to seek clarification from the government is attributed to slow progress made by a committee set up in August last year by the Union Finance Ministry in resolving the issue.
 
   While neither the size nor the names of the committee members have been made public, sources said that whole-time members from IRDAI and SEBI, apart from officials of the Department of Financial Services looking after the pension portfolio, are members of the committee. A 
 
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