ELA denounces that the attack on pensions is getting worse

Nov 12, 2021
ELA complains that Sánchez’s Government, the EU, the CEOE employers association, UGT and CCOO continue taking steps against revaluation according to the CPI and to impose future cut backs with a new MEI. For this reason, they are calling for mobilisations on the 13th of November (pensioners) and on the 1st of December (trade union majority) to put pressure on the PNV, Bildu and Podemos in the Congress.


Mikel Noval, head of Social Policy at ELA, has denounced that “we are seeing a coordinated attack against pensions: Sánchez’s Government intends to approve a 3 point drop in purchasing power in the 2022 budget; a new document has been discovered that ratifies the commitment that next year the number of years used to calculate pensions will continue to increase; and leaks in the social dialogue show that the Intergenerational Equity Mechanism (MEI in its Spanish acronym) proposal means future cut backs in pensions.”

Regarding the first aspect, Mikel Noval from ELA explained that “the Government has tried to sell the fact that the automatic revaluation of the pensions in terms of the CPI was going to be recovered, but this is not the case. In the agreement with CCOO, UGT and CEOE, instead of using the inter-annual CPI from November to November, they have agreed on a different formula. According to this formula, already used in the draft of the General State Budget, although the inter-annual CPI is at 5.5%, which is the current figure, the increase in pensions in 2022 is going to be just 2.5%, which means a loss of 3 points in purchasing power.” In ELA’s opinion, no progressive party should provide cover for a new loss of purchasing power.

The agreement between the Spanish Government and the European Commission (confidential until now) includes the express commitment that in 2022 new cut backs are incorporated, such as moving from 25 to 35 years for the calculation period. Noval indicated that “this is unacceptable and it shows that the European funds are conditioned by social cut backs. ELA has been denouncing this for over a year and a half, but it seems that some people have just found this out now.” Additionally, the new MEI proposed by the Minister Escrivá “foresees cutting back pensions from 2033.”

Noval underscores that “the Government puts emphasis on just one part, which is the increase in social contributions, hiding the rest.” ELA had already denounced the 2011 reform, agreed upon by Zapatero with CCOO and UGT, which introduced the Sustainability Factor that was to come into force in 2027. Following this, Rajoy approved bringing it forward to 2023. Now the idea is to replace the Sustainability Factory with the MEI. “Setting temporary deadlines means the same as they did back in 2011, when they approved putting the retirement age back from 65 to 67 years and we are now seeing the disastrous consequences of this.”

Noval has once again indicated the importance of the vote of parties such as EAJ, EH Bildu or Podemos, which “are necessary to push all these steps in pensions through, either in the reform of the law or in the budget. Don’t sell us in Madrid: put the interests of the majority of society first, it is time to move forward in the acknowledgement of social rights, not cut backs, in the short, the medium or the long term,” he emphasised.

Finally, Noval indicated that “the only route left to us to stop the cut backs or to achieve a minimum pension of 1,080 euros involves mobilisation.” Therefore, he has called for participation in the demonstrations by the Pensioners’ Movement (13th of November), as well as the day of mobilisations to be held on the 1st of December, called by several trade unions, along with many social organisations.