Nova24TV English

Slovenian News In ENGLISH

SDS: The Government Should Harmonise Pensions Because It Has Once Again Deprived The Pensioners

“After almost two years of the government of the Freedom Movement (Gibanje Svoboda), the Social Democrats (Socialni demokrati – SD) and the Left party (Levica), the financial and social situation of pensioners has drastically worsened, not least because of the unfulfilled promises or commitments made by the coalition parties to pensioners,” says the Slovenian Democratic Party (Slovenska demokratska stranka – SDS), demanding that pensions be adjusted by the amount that the pensioners have been deprived of.

While the government or the coalition boasts about the “historic” increase in pensions, the important fact that this so-called “historic” increase is the result of a legal commitment that sets out the formula for calculating the regular harmonisation of pensions remains unmentioned. This is because, due to the drastic increase in the price of food and other basic necessities of life, the current regular adjustment of pensions as a legal commitment is not sufficient to cover the actual needs of pensioners for their survival. At the same time, it also masks the real-term reduction in pensions that pensioners have received as a result of unfulfilled government promises.

SDS: The coalition has financially hit the weakest

The regular adjustment of pensions in February 2024 was 0.6 percent, which amounts to a total of 8.8 percent. This is taking into account the fact that January electricity bills alone were up by 12 percent compared to last year. As of 2024, both employees and pensioners must also pay a compulsory health tax or contribution, which is a measure that was enacted last year by the coalition MPs. The self-proclaimed abolition of voluntary supplementary health insurance has now proved to be yet another scam by the current coalition, hitting especially the lowest-income citizens, including pensioners, the hardest.

At the end of 2022, the government deceived the public, especially pensioners, with promises of an early increase in pensions that did not happen in practice. In fact, pensioners only received the rising prices allowance twice, while the poorest among them received an allowance of only 13 euros, which, given the already difficult social and financial situation of pensioners, is shamefully low, as if the government were making a mockery of the poorest pensioners.

This was followed by a regular pension adjustment in early 2023, which is compulsory by law. Against a backdrop of 10.3 percent inflation and a 19 percent rise in food prices, the government raised pensioners’ pensions by only 5.2 percent, while social transfers went up by 10.3 percent. If the misleading promises made at the time about an early extraordinary adjustment of pensions at the end of 2022 had been true, pensions would have been 9.7 percent higher in 2023 with a regular adjustment, not just 5.2 percent, i.e. 4.5 percent higher than they are. This means that a pensioner who has worked for 40 years and receives a guaranteed pension has been deprived by the government of at least 27 euros per month or 325 euros per year in 2023.

The fact is that under the government of Robert Golob, Slovenian pensioners are being deprived all the time and are therefore getting poorer every day. The measures adopted by the government and the coalition divide citizens into first- and second-class citizens. As a result, people who have worked to build Slovenia, to maintain our system and to pay into the pension coffers are in financial distress, but they are forgotten by the government coalition and live below the at-risk-of-poverty threshold.

Therefore, the SDS party parliamentary group has proposed that the Committee on Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Disability adopt the following conclusions at the end of the debate:

  1. The Committee on Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Disability calls on the Government of the Republic of Slovenia to provide the financial means to pay pensioners the difference of 4.5 percent of the monthly pension they were deprived of in 2023 within one month of the adoption of this decision at the latest, in order to fulfil its promises.
  2. The Committee on Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Disability calls on the Government of the Republic of Slovenia to make an extraordinary adjustment of 4.5 percent to the pensions within one month of the adoption of this decision at the latest.

C. Š.

Share on social media