If elected, Macron will launch pension reform this fall

Emmanuel Macron promised, if re-elected, to “index pensions for inflation this summer” instead of waiting for January 1, and wanted to start pension reform “from autumn” in an interview with TF1 and Le Figaro. Asked about TF1, the presidential candidate explained that he wanted to reprice pensions for inflation since the summer, “considering prices” that have skyrocketed due to the war in Ukraine.

After refusing to maintain the legal age of departure at 62 during his mandate, Emmanuel Macron now wants to return it to 65, abolishing the special regimes of the RATP, EDF and senators along the way. In contrast, he promises a minimum pension of 1,100 euros over the course of his entire career.

Pensions: what presidential candidates offer

difficulty

On 27 March on France 3, Emmanuel Macron indicated that he would like to “take into account the hardships of a career” to delay the retirement age to 65, but accepting the criteria “that we individualize” because “otherwise we will recreate special diets”. He also wants to take into account “long careers” as well as “tedious work, physically or nervously,” referring to slaughterhouse workers and teachers who “sometimes find it difficult in certain classes to live to 65.”

In all these cases, “we will adjust the end of the career through negotiations,” he assured.

Asked at the time about the “risk of putting the French back on the street” in view of the hostility of the unions, he decided that it existed, but to convince, “we must explain why.”

“I agree” that this reform is not easy, but “it is not simple in anything,” he said. And, according to him, it is impossible to save if we want to finance the autonomy of pensioners and raise the minimum pension at the full rate to 1,100 euros.

“I want to do everything calmly, kindly, so a few months ago I did not start such reforms,” he said. “Our country is tired of the Covid crisis and worried about the war, but we must keep moving forward,” he said.

Recall that the President’s grand vision of a “universal system” designed to replace the quarantine of existing regimes did not survive the health crisis. After weeks of strikes and demonstrations, the bill, passed by 49-3 tongs in early March 2020, was immediately “suspended” and never enacted again.

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Pension department accounts are being restored

According to the final reports released by the government in mid-March, the social security pensions department recorded a deficit of 2.6 billion euros last year, ten times less than the health department. Social Security is showing a deficit of 24.4 billion euros in 2021, numbers that have greatly improved from a horrendous record of 38.7 billion in 2020. This good health is reflected in a surplus of family branches (+2.9 billion) and accidents at work (+1.2 billion), but also in limited losses of old-age insurance (-1.1 billion) and old-age solidarity fund (- 1.5 billion). This is a total pension industry deficit of 2.6 billion euros, compared to 6.2 billion in 2020. An unexpected result, while the Sécu Accounts Committee six months ago was counting on a loss of the same magnitude, about 163 billion in expenses. Like all social security services, thanks to “higher-than-expected” economic growth, with a surplus in contributions and taxes as a result, the pension industry is performing even better than before the Covid-19 outbreak (-3 billion in 2019). Enough to spark debate about a possible reform relaunched by presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron, who wants to push back the legal age of departure from 62 to 65. “The pension system is an unbalanced system that loses money every year if we continue like this,” justified Olivier Véran, Minister of Health, defending this deferral of age to “ensure social security.” However, the freed up resources can be used for other purposes, in particular to rescue the healthcare industry, which lost another 26.1 billion euros in 2021, including 18 billion “to overcome the health crisis”, with a constant increase in wages of almost for 10 billion. associated with “Segur de la sante”.

For or against: do we need more social protection? Jean-Charles Simon (Economist) vs. Eric Chenoute (President of Mutuality)