Basabilvaso. Photo via Nexo Fin

Director of the Anses social insurance agency Emilio Basabilvaso confirmed today that the Mauricio Macri administration is analyzing the possibility of reforming the pension system, and that it wants to kick off a debate in Congress after October’s midterm elections.

In an interview with Radio La Red, Basabilvaso said that the government is considering to raise the age at which people can retire. According to El Cronista, it wants to increase the age two years: from 65 to 67 for men and 60 to 62 for women. However, he clarified that this is such a sensitive topic that “it has to be discussed for a really long time and there has to be consensus.”

“The only thing that is clear is that the system has to be public,” he said.

So far, the only legislative step the Macri administration has taken in this process took place last year, when it presented a proposal for the pension system to be modified in “the next three years.” However, the opposition caucuses have not formed a committee to begin discussing the proposal yet.

Basabilvaso went on to describe the two main aspects of the government’s project:

He said that taxpayers will have the opportunity to delay the moment in which they retire to continue contributing to the fund and earn a higher pension in the future: “My personal opinion is that what’s ideal is to have a system like I have read they have in other countries, where the retiring age is voluntary.”

“The worker has the option to continue working and that means their pension will be higher in the future. The State doesn’t have to set an ideal age, but create incentives for those who want to keep working and are able to,” he added.

Moreover, Basabilvaso assured that three-quarters of the people old enough to retire have problems to do so because they haven’t managed to contribute to the fund for 30 the years the law dictates.

Because of this, he said that the project intends to create another system that would be proportional to the number of years during which taxpayers contributed, and complement it with the Universal Pension for the Senior Citizen (PUAM) — created last year — which grants seniors who haven’t contributed during 30 years 80 percent of the minimum pension.