In Austria, the pension adjustment –
improved pension adjustment as it is called there – is being discussed at the
political level. To be precise, it is about aliquoting.
Aliquoting – what is it?
The term is not a common expression for
German readers, so by way of introduction we will briefly explain what is meant
by it in Austria. Aliquoting is defined in terms of business administration
as the pro rata calculation of entitlements of persons for a given accounting
period. With regard to the Austrian pension insurance, this means that
persons entitled to a pension whose pension commencement date was in the
previous year of the pension adjustment shall in principle only receive a first
pro rata adjusted pension. This is regulated accordingly in Section 108h para. 1a General Social Insurance Act (ASVG):
Persons whose pension commencement data was in the previous year will only
receive a specific adjusted amount (90 to 10 per cent) for the pension
adjustment on 1. January of the following year if their pension commenced between
February and November. If the pension commences in November or December, there
will be no adjustment on 1 January of the following year, but the first
increase will only take place with the second following calendar year.
Inflation compensation or adjustment according to law
In times of sharp price rise and high
inflation, this is naturally the subject of political debate. The governing
coalition of the Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) and the Greens therefore wanted
to initiate a temporary suspension of aliquoting, after it had already been
mitigated for 2023. In principle, the adjustment value for Austrian pensions as
of 1. January 2023 was 5.8 per cent. However, the Pension Adjustment Act also
stipulates that the minimum adjustment for all pensioners will be 2.9 per cent.
In the Social Affairs Committee of the
Austrian Parliament – the National Council – no agreement could be reached on
23. March due to the conflicting views of the political parties. While the
ÖVP/Greens favour a temporary suspension, the Social Democratic Party of
Austria (SPÖ) calls for a complete abolition, while the Freedom Party of
Austria (FPÖ) demands an extraordinary pension adjustment and "full
inflation protection" by motion. The NEOS – the Austrian liberals, in
contrast, demand the reintroduction of a one-year waiting period for the first
pension adjustment. Against this background, all motions were adjourned.
Austria and Germany in comparison
There is no discussion in Germany that is
comparable to that in Austria; in Germany, all pensions – irrespective of the
pension commencement date – will be adjusted on 1 July 2023 at 4.39 per cent in the old federal states and
5.86 per cent in the new federal states.