The Inconvenient Truth, That The EU Is No Place For UK Pensioners

Remember the headlines

that glorified “the “Death of 1.5m oldsters” could swing second Brexit vote, says Ian McEwan”, and “Arch-Remainer Lord Heseltine” shockingly claimed that a second referendum on leaving the European Union is necessary, as “elderly” Brexit supporters are dying off”. Nice to feel not wanted! 

Well, why wait for an EU referendum to insult us? After all this time we have been in the EU, we UK pensioners receive the insulting and degrading lowest pension in the developed world.

How does 29% of the working wage suit you?

Hardly worth staying alive for is it? Hardly worth being in the EU for? What do we pay the EU? In 2017 £9billion net?

Around the world, pensioners in the Netherlands, Turkey and Croatia receive more than 100% of a working wage when they retire. Dutch and Turkish pensioners get 101% and 102%, respectively, but Croatians receive a generous 129%.

Annually, in the UK it’s £7,440, while in France it’s £15,811, Germany it’s £26,366, Spain it’s £26,630, and Ireland it’s £10,317.

That is according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which analysed data from its 35 member countries and a number of other nations. The data, compiled as part of the OECD’s Pensions at a Glance 2017 report, also reveals India (99%), Portugal (95%), and Italy (93%) have very competitive pension rates.

The lowest pension in the developed world

At the other end of the scale, pensioners in the United Kingdom suffer from the worst deal of any OECD country, receiving just 29% of a working wage when they retire. To put this into perspective, the OECD average is 63% and the average for EU member states is 71%.

Elsewhere, the pension rate in the United States is 49%, while in China, which is home to more than 1.4 billion people, the rate is 83%, OECD data shows. Takes me back to history lessons about old age poverty and pensions.

Yet while most of those numbers seem generous, they mask a raft of more serious concerns. Improved healthcare in the developed and much of the developing world means people are living longer, and are therefore drawing a state pension for more years than systems were designed to handle.

According to data from The World Bank, retirees in the six countries with the largest pension systems are living between eight and 11 years longer, and a massive 16 years longer in Japan.

These pensions systems, in the US, UK, Japan, Netherlands, Canada and Australia, were also described as a “global timebomb” in a recent report by the World Economic Forum.

This is because these systems are expected to create a joint shortfall of $224 trillion by 2050, “imperilling the incomes of future generations and setting the industrialized world up for the biggest pension crisis in history”, the report says.

Be you leaver or remainer, your state pension is disgraceful by contrast with those other 27 EU countries and especially Germany, France, and Holland. 

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