Pension fund problems to be analyzed

The program is running at deficits that will bankrupt it by 2024.


The executive, through Minister of Health Javier Terrientes, asked the National Assembly yesterday for the withdrawal of a bill that sought to increase the gasoline tax by 5 cents a liter to pay for a hike in Social Security pensions.

The request was approved unanimously.

The decision to withdraw the project occurred following criticism of the plan by various sectors of society. The Cabinet Council will discuss new funding proposals at its meeting today, said Terrientes.

According to estimates, the pension program will enter into an operating deficit next year and will deplete its $4.5 billion in reserves by 2024 if changes aren't made.

"We will seek a funding mechanism to strengthen the program," the minister said.

Minister of Economy and Finance Dulcidio De La Guardia said that multiple financing alternatives are being looked at, including generating savings within the executive and the legislature.

"We are working to identify potential savings in the general budget, as well as other potential sources of income to cope with this increase," he said



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