Representatives from politics and social partnership should develop measures to make employment more attractive. In concrete terms, the main aim is to keep older people in the labor market, emphasized the responsible ministers before the first meeting.
The establishment of the working group was decided at the last government meeting. In addition to Economics Minister Martin Kocher, Finance Minister Magnus Brunner (both ÖVP) and Social Affairs Minister Johannes Rauch (Greens), the social spokespersons of the two governing parties and representatives of employers, employees and senior citizens will also take part in the talks. The first results should be available in three months.
The interlocutors are to examine, for example, whether gainful employment can be made more attractive in parallel with drawing one’s own pension from the standard retirement age, an increase in the incentives to remain in employment beyond the statutory retirement age and the evaluation of other existing tax exemptions for wage and salary supplements. “We want to make work possible for older people,” said Minister Kocher, setting the direction of travel.
Social Affairs Minister Rauch first of all wants to hear suggestions from the social partners and from experts, as he emphasized before the meeting. People should also be able to work until just before retirement. “It’s about keeping people in work, said Finance Minister Brunner. There are already incentives, but you’ve seen “that it’s still not enough.” Social Affairs Minister Rauch made it clear before the meeting that “the retirement age isn’t going to be shaken up.” .
After the meeting, the ÖGB emphasized its no to the abolition of pension contributions for people who are also employed alongside their pension. This would be a “fatal sign”, said the head secretary Ingrid Reischl, especially if employer contributions were no longer paid, this would lead to pensioners being given preference over younger people. And it would not be a suitable measure against a shortage of workers, as there is a need above all where the burden is high, for example in nursing, she noted in a press release.