Today, pensions are perceived as something to which a person has a definite right, and one cannot actually imagine a dignified life in old age without it. However, it is necessary to realize that it is only a socio-economic construct, which could also look completely different. After all, humanity has existed for a long time without any pensions.
It doesn’t work anymore
The first pension systems began to emerge only sometime at the end of the 19th century and fully developed into their present forms only in the 20th century. They have only been operating in this form for about 100 years. So it cannot be said that it is something immutable that could not literally undergo fundamental changes in the near future.
After all, it turns out that gradually relaxing conditions and making pensions available from an earlier age was a rather unsustainable strategy that will have to be revised. A pension reform is already underway in the Czech Republic, as part of which people will have to prepare for the fact that they will change a lot.
First of all, it will be about when people will retire. Today it is set at 65 years, and it is already pretty clear that this age is unsustainable. Almost everyone can agree on that. For a while it looked like the retirement age would be raised to 67, but it soon became clear that even that was not enough.
So the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs solved it Solomonically. In the new adjustment, everyone should spend approximately 21.5 years in retirement. The retirement age will therefore be variable and will depend on the life expectancy.
The only way to keep it
At the same time, it is constantly increasing and there is an assumption that it will continue to grow. If it climbs to over 100 years, people will retire sometime around the age of eighty. However, critics of this setting draw attention to the fact that although people are living to an increasingly old age, they are far from spending it all in good health.
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However, it seems that we will slowly but surely return to the original concept of pensions, when not everyone lived to see it, and when they did, they only spent a few years in it. This was sustainable for the state in the long term. Another option is to abolish compulsory social insurance and with it pensions completely and leave it up to the people themselves to secure themselves during their productive lives in such a way that they will be able to go on vacation when they see fit.
Comment by Tomáš Mrkvička