Expert: No need for hasty introduction of new pension changes in Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan, Astana, June 12 / Trend /
There is no need for a hasty introduction of pension changes in Kazakhstan, director of the Risk Assessment Group and political science candidate, Dosym Satpayev said on Tuesday.
"There is no need for hasty introduction of pension changes from an economic or demographic point of view," he said in an interview with Trend.
He recalled that an accumulative pension system was introduced with the same haste in the country in 1998, citing Chile's experience.
"Then all were convinced that Kazakhstan's economy would suffer in connection with the population's ageing process without such a system," expert said. "As a result, this experience did not suit Kazakhstan. Many pension funds have shown a low yield.
"A decision was made to decline this system in favour of establishing a common pension fund, as well as by raising the retirement age for women."
He added that Kazakhstan cites the world and particularly the Western experience, where the retirement age has been increased due to the increase in the number of retirees in many countries.
"But it is rather silly to compare Norway where men and women retire at age 67 and Kazakhstan, taking into account different standards of living in the two countries, different quality of social and health services," Satpayev said.
According to the UN, Kazakhstan faces an aging population by 2050. But according to the Statistics Agency as of January 1, 2012, the total number of young people (14-29 years old) was 27 per cent of the total population of the country.
"The share of young people in the demographic composition of the Kazakh population has greatly increased compared to the statistics as of 1999," he said.
"Unemployment is growing among young people now, rather than by 2050. Young people cannot find jobs in the labour market for many reasons."
Moreover, there is still the problem of self-employed individuals (about 2.7 million people) who do not make any pension contributions.
"I think that the government must first of all solve these problems and then deal with the next experiments," he said. "In the end, the Kazakh Minister of Labour and Social Protection Serik Abdenov was retired on account of the complicated mechanism of the pension bill implementation, rather than the bill itself. This mechanism has led to the growth of dissent in society and an impact on the authorities' reputation as a whole."
"According to the president, the pension reform itself will continue just in a different format and a slower pace to try to conduct a PR campaign among the population.
"It is not known whether the public reaction to these pension changes will be softer in 2018," Satpayev said.
Kazakh Minister of Labour and Social Protection Serik Abdenov was dismissed from his post upon a presidential decree. According to another presidential decree, his deputy Tamara Duisenova will be acting minister.
The work on the explanation of the pension reform by the government and the National Bank of the Republic is unsatisfactory, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev told people in his TV message on June 7.
The president returned the law on 'Provision of pensions in the Republic of Kazakhstan' to be revised by parliament and called for a postponement towards increasing the retirement age by 2018.