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It would be good to obtain the minimum2009-11-06 10:01
Pensions in Georgia are going to grow by another five laris. Gradually, the government is bringing to life its promise of enlarging the pension benefit up to 100 dollars. However, there is a problem: during the implementation of the poverty-fighting program, this level fell behind the cost of living again because of inflation. The Georgian opposition believes that the five-laris escalation is simply another "lot of opium" for the people.
Since November 15, the Georgian pensioners will receive pensions that have again grown by five laris (which is approximately 3 dollars). This is the second five-laris increase this year.
For comparison, this year, pensions in Russia have been increased three times already: in March, April and August. Since December 1, the core part of the pension is going to be increased for the fourth time by 31,5 percent. In total, the average amount of pension will exceed 8000 rubles ($272,5), while the minimum pensions will be equal to the minimum cost of living equal to 4780 rubles (163 dollars).
Meanwhile, the Georgian Ministry of Labour, Health Care and Social Protection is happily reporting that the size of the minimum retirement pension amounts to 80 laris (earlier, it was 75 laris, or 44 dollars). Disabled persons having a relevant status may also count upon 80 laris, while a handicapped person without such status may count upon 70 laris instead of the previous 65.
The officials also promise to retain the length-of-service allowances (5-7-10 laris depending on the number of the years worked). However, the work record books confirming the length of service are announced to be optional.
According to Ministry of Social Protection, in October, there were 641 350 pensioners and 108 406 handicapped persons registered in Georgia. About 71 mln laris of the state budget will be spent on their pension coverage in November.
The November budget increase was planned last year in the context of the governmental program United Georgia Without Poverty. Its progress is confirmed by the fact that within the last three years, the pension in Georgia has grown from 14 up to 70 laris, while in the times of Eduard Shevardnadze it was never paid at all.
By the way, in the context of the program, Mikhail Saakashvili's government decided to support the families living below the poverty line. At the beginning of the year, there have been 145 thousand of such families (that is about 400 thousand people). They were paid 30 laris per month per capita plus additional 24 laris (instead of 12 last year laris) per every next member of the family. So far, the authorities do not say anything about any other increase of payments to such families.
Meanwhile, according to the estimation of the oppositional deputy of the Kartuli Dasi party Jondi Bagaturia, over one million people in the country live behind the poverty line. The system, according to which the authorities have allocated only 400 thousand laris, is invalid and requires correction.
So far, there are about 600 thousand people left without the state's support. They have got a job but their income does not reach even the cost of living set up by the state, which is far from reality.
Special attention should be paid to the story with defining the content of the consumer basket and its cost in Georgia.