New Pension Reform Coming

Total Croatia News

Pensions will be given even to people who have not paid any contributions to pension funds.

The national pension – pension for those older than 65 who have not worked long enough to achieve a regular pension or have not worked at all, so they have no income in old age – could be introduced in Croatia in 2021. It will be paid to persons who have lived in Croatia for at least 15 years and have no other sources of income. Other conditions, especially those related to property possibly owned by the persons in question, are yet to be determined, reports Jutarnji List on April 17, 2017.

The plan in contained within the draft strategy of social care for the elderly for the period from 2017 to 2020, which the Ministry of Demography, Family, Youth and Social Policy has submitted to the public debate. According to the plan of activities, in the last quarter of 2018, a comprehensive analysis of the current situation should be completed. By the end of 2019, criteria for coverage of potential beneficiaries, property and income thresholds, and parameters for the calculation of the national pension will be defined, and by the last quarter of 2020, the legislative framework should be adopted. Therefore, in 2021, the first national pensions are expected to be paid.

It is estimated that there are around 100,000 people over 65 years of age in Croatia with no income, but only 9,287 receive social assistance. The introduction of national pension has been intermittently announced several times during the last 15 years, and was one of pre-election promises of the current government and has been included in the government’s programme of activities for the term from 2016 to 2020. The national pension has been declared one of the main goals within the area of protection of vulnerable persons.

National pensions currently exist in about a hundred countries around the world. It is an essential mechanism for the protection of older people from poverty. In Croatia, about 17 percent of the population aged between 25 and 55 years, and as much as 26 percent of people older than 65 years, are at risk of poverty.

The biggest challenge will be determining the optimal amount of the national pension, which should be higher than the social assistance (maximum of 900 kuna for a single person), but still smaller than the smallest possible regular pension. According to the strategy, the new pension will need to be analysed with regards to whether the person owns property, whether it was employed and paid some contributions or has never worked. One of the important groups to take into account will be older women living in rural areas who are affected by poverty.

As one of the main objectives in the future, the strategy also includes the reform of the payment system for accommodation in state homes for the elderly, in which about 17,000 people live, but at the same time there are about 72,000 requests for accommodation there.


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