SWITZERLAND- -The Swiss Federation of Trade Unions is calling for a guaranteed minimum pension of CHF3000 (e1,933) a month for retirees.
A committee of experts appointed by the Federation has found that currently more than 25% of pensioners receive a monthly income of less then CHF2000, and more than half manage on less than CHF3000. The committee concluded that a pension of less than CHF3000 was not adequate to cover essential needs.
It is women who currently suffer disproportionately. Their pensions are on average CHF2500, or CHF750 less than their male counterparts.
The committee judged the first pillar AVS superior to the second pillar: it is more adaptable and generates a fairer distribution of resources.
The committee's recommendations were for a reduction of the gap between the minimum and maximum state pensions in the first pillar, with an automatic top-up to CHF3000 for a single person. Contributions to the second pillar, on the other hand, would be reduced by 20%.
The result would be a significant rise in the replacement rate for the poorest households. At the same time the importance of the pay as you go system would be reinforced at the expense of the funded system.
Pierre Gilliand, member of the group of experts, said: “The financing of the first pillar under pay as you go increases solidarity; its strengthening contributes to limiting poverty in old age. A complementary second pillar, even slightly reduced, is robust and suitable for maintaining pensioners’ previous standard of living.”
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