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August 9, 2022

Controversial measures affecting pensioners

The Boc Government found the solution to collect money to the state budget: the taxation of the poor pensioners, according to several news reports yesterday.

According to the draft budget, the state receipts from the tax on revenues derived from pensions in 2010 are estimated at RON 1.2 bln, a value 2.36 times bigger compared to 2009. But, the sum collected at the budget further to this operation is ridiculously small in comparison with the funding needs of the Romanian state, “Jurnalul National” reads. The EUR 166 M means EUR 7 per Romanian citizen. Compared to the debt of over EUR 1,000 that each citizen has further to the “safety belt” taken from the IMF, the amount is insignificant.

“The very important growth of the receipts from the pension tax, from RON 507.7 M in 2009 to RON 1.2 bln in the draft budget 2010, supposes the extension of the taxation base which can be done through the taxation of the small pensions below RON 1,000, which are not taxed now, of some special pensions, and of some contributions to pensions,” the economic analyst Liviu Voinea, executive director Applied Economy Group, cautions. Voinea considers that these measures are not even by far the best solution against the crisis.

“The pensioners should have expected this,” estimates the economic analyst Ilie Serbanescu. He explained that the passing of the law which supposes a pension point equal to at least 45 per cent of the gross monthly average salary was a stupid decision, which could not be financed. “I already said at that time that it is nonsense to increase the pensions without financial support. It is impossible to increase the pension point to 45 per cent when you take only 29 per cent from the salaries, if you have a ratio of one pensioner to one employee. It is an electoral story,” Serbanescu said for ‘Jurnalul National.’

The daily ‘Romania libera’ also reads the persons with pensions below the taxation limit, of RON 1,000, should have also paid, starting on January 1, 2010, health insurance contributions in the amount of 6.5 per cent, according to a draft law from the past years. Since the public pensions were frozen at the level from October 2009, the Government deferred the taxation of the pensions for health for 2011.

On another hand, the pensioners can remain even more than four months without money benefits if they change their domicile, because the paperwork connected with the transfer from one local pension house to another is very complex, and the employees need a long time to do it. According to the management of the Pension House of the City of Bucharest, quoted by ‘Gardianul,’ the most difficult cases are those of the persons who benefit from revolutionary or successor pensions.

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