With visible anger, the Minister of Social Security, José Luis Escrivá, has charged against those who criticize or question the revaluation of pensions with the CPI due to high inflation. “There is no more spurious debate”, he has repeated. The person in charge of public pensions has directly attacked “the opinionators” about pensions in the media, who have indicated that they are mostly the academics responsible for the 2013 PP pension reform that the government has repealed. But Escrivá has also distributed to the Bank of Spain, in a somewhat more veiled way, and to “the smartasses” who use the debate “to take advantage” and sell their private savings products, among which he has mentioned the ING Direct bank. All this, in an act organized by Expansión and Banco Santander with the presence of the main figures of the private retirement sector.
Entrepreneurs and the right threaten a new consensus for pension reform
The Minister of Social Security has attended the event of the economic newspaper to close the act on pensions, in which the focus has been placed on the recent law to promote employment pension plans and that create public pension funds. José Luis Escrivá has instead focused his words on a "current" debate, he has warned, that seems "the most spurious" possible: the criticism of the rise in pensions with prices due to inflation.
Escrivá has pointed out that this debate is "truly surprising" in Spain, since in other countries pensions are also being revalued according to prices or wages without questioning the revaluation systems due to the inflationary situation. “Absolutely false information is used that this is a problem that comes from Europe. I dare someone to tell me in which European report it says that [las pe nsiones] they do not have to be revalued with inflation”, he maintained.
"But what debate is this?" Said the minister, who recalled that Social Security is on the way to budget balance, with a significant reduction in the agency's deficit in the last year thanks to the exit of the so-called "improper expenses". ” to the General Budgets and the increase in income in social contributions.
“What is behind all this? Why is this so weird? Why do we have this artificial debate and bombard us with this?”, the minister launched to the audience. "It is again an irresponsibility to create uncertainty for ten million pensioners", it has been answered seconds later.
Against the academics of the PP reform
The minister has pointed out that “two elements converge” that fuel this debate. On the one hand, he has charged against the academics who participated in the 2013 pension reform of the Popular Party. "In the crazy reform of 2013, that of the sustainability factor and the IRP, a group of academics had the opportunity -because the Government left them- to design a very innovative system", Escrivá has related.
This reform corrected the Social Security deficit "through a massive cut in pensions over 20 or 30 years." “Not even the one who roasted the butter would think of doing that. It lasted two years”, the minister recalled, since the PP stopped applying it in the face of social protest and the lack of political support.
“It just so happens that this whole group of academics are the great opinion-makers of the last 25 years in pensions. They are in the corresponding think tanks and they did not like that we repealed such an innovative reform”, Escrivá stressed.
The person in charge of pensions has also attacked the PP, for supporting the rise in pensions according to the CPI in the Toledo Pact, only to question it shortly afterwards. "It's irresponsible."
It also distributes to the Bank of Spain and "the smart guys"
Later, José Luis Escrivá has criticized again to the Bank of Spain for its recommendations on pensions. On this occasion, without expressly mentioning the regulator. “You will not find a single central bank in Europe, perhaps with one exception, that is saying that pensions should not be revalued in their countries. None”, he pointed out as a reproach to the institution headed by Governor Pablo Hernández de Cos.
“Because it doesn't have much to do with the current inflationary process, which is where the central banks could enter. If we are talking about equity issues, central banks do not have democratic legitimacy to talk about equity. They do not have it, it is decided in Parliament”, he added.
Finally, the minister has attacked "the clever ones, who take advantage" of this debate. “Have you seen, for example, the telephone advertising of ING Direct? It takes advantage of all this to try to shift savings to ING products. Do you think it is responsible when everything behind this is false? ”, Expressly pointed out the person in charge of Social Security. “Of course, pensions are going to maintain purchasing power”, he has reaffirmed.
The minister has concluded that “there is no more spurious debate in Spain that I can think of than this one. Full of falsehoods, full of spuriousness, which never put the cold facts of truth on the table. European narratives are invented that do not exist”, he underlined. “It saddens me, it is a great irresponsibility.”