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(en) France, Union Communiste Libertaire AL #299 - Retreats: We'll be right when we're dead! (fr, it, pt)[machine translation]

Date Wed, 20 Nov 2019 09:40:28 +0200

Macron and the CFDT stand together to defend the pension reform of High Commissioner Delevoye. From PAYG Retirement to Points Retirement, what are the differences ? And if the recipes of the system go down, is not it necessary to tighten the belt ? ---- Government blitz started in the media, with the complicity of the CFDT, to make believe that the retirement points would be a fair and inevitable reform. But in fact, what is point retirement ? The current system is a defined benefit pay-as-you-go scheme, where the contributions of active and active people pay pensions to retirees, and we know in advance how much is going to be paid. For the general scheme, the pension is equal to 50% of the average salary over the best 25 years, to which are added the supplementary schemes. On average, the pension is equal to 70% of the last net salary.

This system has been largely undermined by the reforms of 1993, 2003 and 2010, which are only beginning to feel the effects. But the goal of Delevoye's point retirement is to go even further, maintaining a pay-as-you-go system, but with undefined benefits : we will know how much we contribute, but not what we will be able to pay. final ! Part of the salary will be converted into points based on a certain purchase value, and upon departure these points will be converted into a pension, depending on a service value. Obviously, the value of the point will vary each year. As Fillon very well explains «the point system actually allows one thing, that no politician confesses. This makes it possible to reduce the value of the points each year and thus to reduce the level of pensions " [1].

A mechanical decline in pensions
The CFDT, a supporter of the Delevoye reform, suggests that this can be determined each year by the " social partners ". But the government is clear: it wants the system to operate at a constant envelope, at 14% of GDP. However, the number of retirees will increase by more than a third by 2050. Thus mechanically pensions can only decline. The " social partners " can only organize the shortage. The 2015 Agirc-Arrco supplementary pension reform, which works in points, is thus symbolic: rather than questioning the lack of funding for these pensions, the CFDT, the GSC and the CFTC have preferred to lower pensions by adjusting the value of the pension. point, and boast behind to have ' saved pay-as-you-go pensions . "

Macron has been trying to save time by saying that the value of the point is not yet fixed. Yet the Delevoye report, released in July, gives a value. This is calculated to give a replacement rate of 70% of the last net salary, but only in the case of a career with no salary progression or hole. Today, 70% is the average replacement rate in France, despite periods of unemployment, maternity, especially because this rate is calculated on the 25 best years, not on the entire career as for a point system. The first simulations thus give, for real careers, falls of 20% to 30% of pensions. And again, it's for the value of the current point, which will inevitably go down in the future.

Officials and special schemes stigmatized
Who will be affected ? Everyone ! As usual, the government stigmatizes officials and special schemes. While it is obvious that they will be particularly impacted by the reform, the most impacted will probably be the workers whose career is the most fragmented: women who suffer more part-time, younger, more subject to periods of unemployment, precariousness, later returning to the labor market, employees in hard-line jobs who often have to stop working or are made redundant before having a full career, etc. Even current retirees will be concerned because their pensions will be converted into points and will fluctuate [2]. In the latest news, Macron speaks of a very evasive B plan, in which the entry into force of the reform would be postponed to new generations of entrants, probably only in the most mobilized professional sectors [3]. On the other hand, as far as special diets are concerned, it must not be forgotten that they correspond to very difficult occupations: coercion, night work or underground, etc. Incidentally, one will note this quote from Delevoye: " the special regimes of uniforms (military, police ...) will be maintained ".

A permanent decrease in contributions
According to the Pension Advisory Council, the pension system will be in deficit by about 10 billion euros in 2022, from 100 to 120 billion euros in 2050, and " this difference is linked to stable expenditure but revenues down . Clearly, it is not the sum of pensions that increases, it is the contributions that decline. Thus, in 2013, all the various exemptions from employers' social security contributions amounted to 33 billion euros [4]. The bosses pay almost no more contributions on wages between 1 and 1.6 Smic.

And these exemptions do not serve the bosses to hire, but instead encourage them to fatten their shareholders. Thus, in 2018, the profits of the CAC40 were 87 billion euros, so much money that could have been used to increase wages and, as a result, social contributions.

It is therefore not a demographic problem but a political one. There are more and more retirees, but productivity is increasing and, as wages stagnate, the profits of the bosses are increasing rather than being used to maintain and improve the current pension system. This is a holdup in good standing.

The government was supposed to present its recommendations at the end of 2018 for a vote in 2019. The movement of yellow vests passed by and the Delevoye report was only presented in July 2019. Since then, Macron has announced a vote on reform after the municipal elections of March 2020. The time may seem long until then, especially as the social climate is rather agitated in this season. The inter-union CGT-FO-Solidaires-FSU-UNEF calls for an interprofessional strike on December 5, and several structures have announced their intention to continue the strike beyond.

Gregoire (UCL Orleans)

[1] Video of March 10, 2016, where François Fillon addresses bosses during a party at the Concorde Foundation.

[2] See p. 25 of the Delevoye report.

[3] " Pension reform, a plan B is emerging ", Les Echos, October 16, 2019.

[4] According to Public Life, a government website.

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