The international national accounting standards provide a somewhat scattered picture of pension arrangements. The System of National Accounts (SNA 2008) and the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010) allow for a better analysis and international comparability of the pension systems within and between countries, by introducing a supplementary table on pension schemes.
Recommendations on how to compile this table have been collected in a technical compilation guide (Eurostat, European Central Bank, 2011). Since its release in 2011, this guide has served as the main reference for European Union National Statistical Institutes for completing the supplementary table, and compiling statistics on pension obligations of those schemes for which no actuarial estimations have previously been estimated.
The supplementary table on pension schemes is mandatory for all EU-countries on a three year basis, starting with 2015. Already in 2010 first preliminary estimates were published for the Netherlands. More recent work by Statistics Netherlands led to a research paper by Schmitz et al. (2015). The Eurostat grant led to further development of this pension table, and the methodology used , in order to meet the requirements of ESA 2010.