SP pensioner leader Peter Kostelka saw “no reason to celebrate” after the adjustments for 2024 decided by the black-green government. His VP counterpart Ingrid Korosec was somewhat milder in her verdict, who spoke of several “downsides” and called for readjustments.
The senior citizens’ representatives were satisfied that the increase in pensions by 9.7 percent compensated for inflation. The Senior Citizens Council also views the protective clause announced by the government to prevent an impending loss of value for the coming retirement cohort as positive. But one would also have liked a solution for 2025. Now a decision on this is looming “in the smoke of the 2024 election campaign,” warned Kostelka. It is also a problem that the Council of Ministers’ lecture only talks about old-age pensions. This would mean that the protective clause would only apply to just over half of the around 100,000 new pensioners in 2024.
Those with long-term insurance, hard workers and corridor pensioners would not be included, said Kostelka, who spoke of “disingenuousness” if this was not stated very clearly.
The pensioner representatives also criticized the fact that their demands for compensation for the interim financing of the 2022/2023 inflation and for a permanent abolition of aliquoting – i.e. the proportional pension adjustment in the first year of retirement – remained unfulfilled. Aliquoting is suspended for two years.
A “downside” for Korosec is the cap on pension increases for the highest pensions. The 7,250 civil servants with salaries of more than 5,850 euros are not luxury pensioners, she rejected such descriptions. The fact that there has always been a cap on the highest pensions for 14 years does not correspond to either the benefit or insurance principle.
Caritas criticized the fact that the lowest pensions were not increased more. “9.7 percent sounds like a lot – but for minimum pensioners that is still often not enough to be able to cover the expenses of everyday life or even to get out of the poverty trap,” says Caritas President Michael Landau. The most urgent everyday products would have become more expensive than the average inflation rate. The gap between the compensatory allowance and the at-risk-of-poverty threshold remains.
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