The United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund was established in 1949, by a resolution of the General Assembly, to provide retirement, death, disability and related benefits for staff upon cessation of their services with the United Nations, under Regulations that, since then, have been amended at various times.
As an independent inter-agency entity, the Fund operates under its own Regulations as approved by the General Assembly and, in accordance with its governance structure, is administered by the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Board, which currently consists of 33 members, representing the 24 member organizations that are listed below:
- Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization
- European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
- International Atomic Energy Agency
- International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
- International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and the Restoration of Cultural Property
- International Civil Aviation Organization
- International Criminal Court
- International Fund for Agricultural Development
- International Labour Organization
- International Maritime Organization
- International Organization for Migration
- Inter-Parliamentary Union
- International Seabed Authority
- International Telecommunication Union
- International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea
- Special Tribunal for Lebanon
- United Nations
- United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
- United Nations Industrial Development Organization
- World Health Organization
- World Intellectual Property Organization
- World Meteorological Organization
- World Tourism Organization
One third of the Board members are chosen by the General Assembly and the corresponding governing bodies of the other member organizations, one third by the executive heads of those organizations and one third by the participants in the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund. The Board reports to the General Assembly on the operations of the Fund and on the investment of its assets. When necessary, it recommends amendments to the Regulations and to the Fund’s Pension Adjustment System, which govern, inter alia, the rates of contribution by the participants (currently 7.9 per cent of their pensionable remuneration) and by the organizations (currently 15.8 per cent), eligibility for participation and the benefits to which participants and their dependants may become entitled.
In addition to the Board, the following Committees assist in the governance of the Fund.
United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund Board (UNJSPB)
The Fund is administered by the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Board, a staff pension committee for each member organization and a secretariat to the Pension Board and to each staff pension committee. The Pension Board reports to and formulates recommendations for approval by the United Nations General Assembly. It is composed of 33 members; 11 members represent Governing Bodies, 11 members appointed by the chief administrative officers of the member organizations, and 11 members elected by participants in service. In addition, there are 4 representatives of retirees on the Pension Board.
The Pension Board appoints a Standing Committee that has the power to act on behalf of the Board when the latter is not in session. The Committee also considers appeals of decisions of the Staff Pension Committees by participants and of decisions of the Chief Executive Officer of the Fund by retirees and other beneficiaries. The Committee is composed of 15 members; 5 represent the Governing Bodies of the member organizations, 5 members appointed by the chief administrative officers of the member organizations, and 5 members elected by participants in service. In addition, there are 2 representatives of retirees on the Standing Committee.
The Committee consists of 9 members (plus ad hoc members) appointed by the UN Secretary-General after consultation with the Pension Board and the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions, subject to confirmation by the UN General Assembly.
Committee of Actuaries
The Committee consists of 5 (plus ad hoc members) independent actuaries appointed by the UN Secretary-General upon the recommendation of the Pension Board. The Committee advises the Pension Board on actuarial questions arising out of the operation of the Fund’s Regulations.
Staff Pension Committees
Among its functions, by delegation from the Standing Committee, the staff pension committee in each member organization has the power to determine incapacity for the purpose of award of disability benefits. Each Staff Pension Committee also reviews decisions of the Secretary of the Staff Pension Committee in respect of staff members of the member organization who are participants in the Fund. Each Committee is composed of an equal number of members representing (i) the Governing Body, (ii) the chief administrative officer and (iii) the participants in service.