I have watched an interview with a financial expert arguing about the big impact of so-called "special pensions" in Romania (1-2% of GDP). This is confirmed by some politicians that argued about pensions that might be bigger than the salary.

The same person argued that the European Commission considers "special" pensions the ones not obeying some sort of contribution-related principle (i.e. there is a proportionality between contributions to the pension fund during the active professional life and the pension amount). As a consequence having "special" pensions is something that should be avoided.


I have tried finding an official text related to those above and found this article, but I am not sure the "special" pensions topic is touched in any way. What seems to be related to the contribution related principle:

The PSEO follows the actuarial balance principle. The annual contribution paid by the staff has to cover one third of the rights that the staff have acquired during a given year. The acquired rights of EU civil servants during that given year correspond to the future pensions that the staff will receive after retirement, as well as to the entitlement (under certain conditions) to an invalidity allowance, a survivor's pension, and an orphan's pension. In other words, the annual contribution is designed to finance one third of the service cost under the pension scheme, i.e. a series of payments that will arise in the future. In order to make this computation possible, the series of payments for European civil servants has to be evaluated at its present value (using an interest rate "discount rate"). The computation is thus an actuarial valuation.

Question: Did the European Commission officially mention that pensions should obey some sort of contribution-related principle?

  • Meh. I feel this a question with an easy escape hatch. Even if they did, what's to stop "special" pensions from being the result of larger (as a percentage) "special" contributions that are part of the pay package?
    – Fizz
    Jul 18, 2021 at 13:39
  • FWTW, MEP pensions are based on years of service. 3.5% per year, capped at 70%, i.e. 20 years. europarl.europa.eu/news/en/faq/13/salaries-and-pensions
    – Fizz
    Jul 18, 2021 at 13:44
  • 2
    Germany has a system where 'traditional-style' civil service pensions (for Beamte) are not matched by contributions out of the salary. This has been going on for centuries and it is understood by (almost) all -- with a civil serivce job, the relation of nominal and actual income and retirement pay is different than for other jobs, and any job-seeker will factor that into their decisions. In recent decades more civil-service positions use the normal pension schemes (for Angestellte im öffentlichen Dienst).
    – o.m.
    Jul 19, 2021 at 18:52
  • (contd.) There are a few cases where the pension can match the final salary, e.g. for a professor emeritus.
    – o.m.
    Jul 19, 2021 at 18:55


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