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Politics

Mini-Pension Reform Bill Has “Strong Social Stamp”, Hatzidakis Tells ANA

November 20, 2022

ATHENS – Reforms with a strong social stamp that correct past injustices are included in the draft bill to modernise pension legislation recently submitted to parliament, Labour and Social Affairs Minister Kostis Hatzidakis said in an interview with the Athens-Macedonian News Agency released on Sunday.

“Among others, we are supporting 2.3 million vulnerable fellow human beings at a difficult time through the payment of an extraordinary financial benefit [of 250 euros] by December 20. We are defining the necessary processes for adjusting pensions from January 1, 2023 that, combined with a series of other increases…will result in a significant boost of the real income of the overwhelming majority (95 pct) of pensioners,” he said.

Other measures included a uniform set of rules for disability, making the lower social insurance contributions permanent, subsidising the conversion of part-time jobs to full time and extending maternity leave to nine months.

The law will “unfreeze” regular pension increases, linking them with the rate of increase of both GDP growth and the price index. The amount paid will initially be based on budget forecasts and then adjusted accordingly once the final figures for the year are released by ELSTAT and the result incorporated into the increase of the following year, the minister said.

The vast majority of pensioners will also benefit from the abolition of the solidarity levy, the one-off payment of 250 euros and the 4th dose of payments from a recalculation of pensions with more than 30 years worth of contributions.

In addition to pensioners, the 250-euro benefit will be given to those on disability benefits, uninsured seniors and those receiving the Minimum Guarantee Income or child benefit.

The bill also regulates issues relating to unpaid debts to the unified social insurance fund EFKA and when these can be written off, the insurance rights of employees in cases where unpaid debts are written off, as well as other measures.

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