17 million pensioners in France to see basic pensions boosted by 4%

Rising inflation and the cost of living have prompted the change to régime général plans, the prime minister said, although unions say it is not enough

A older woman holding a piece of paper and working something out on a calculator
The prime minister has said that a pensioner receiving €1,200 per month could receive an additional €60 from August
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Basic pensions in France are set to be increased by 4% in July, in an exceptional move caused by rising inflation that will affect 17 million people, Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne has said.

The pensions would not normally be revalued in July, but an exception has been made due to the currently-rising cost of living.

Ms Borne confirmed to FranceBleu this week: “We can see that inflation is high and that we have to respond without waiting for the usual date of revaluation of pensions, i.e. 1 January 2023. I can confirm that for all [basic] pensions, there will be a 4% revaluation in July.”

The 4% increase will concern basic pensions of the general scheme (régime général), which covers pensioners from the private sector and the civil service only.

Around 80% of pensioners in France are under this scheme, which is managed by the Caisse nationale d’assurance vieillesse (Cnav).

The revaluation will apply to all eligible retirees from July, which will be paid from August 9.

The measure is set to be voted for in Parliament as part of the purchasing power law (loi sur le pouvoir d’achat), which is scheduled to be presented to the cabinet on June 29, and then to the Assemblée nationale and the Senate.

Read more: Cost of living in France: New details on 'purchasing power' law

Read more: French pensions to be tied to inflation in July, labour minister says

Overall, basic pensions will have been revalued (and increased) by 5.1% total in 2022.

Ms Borne said: “Specifically, for a person who has a pension of €1,200 per month, it will mean €60 extra per month.”

This is a different figure to that stated by Work Minister Olivier Dussopt on May 24. He said that a person on €1,200 would receive €45 extra per month. However, it was later clarified that Ms Borne’s figure also included the 1.1% revaluation from January this year.

However, nine pension unions have said that the increase is not enough to account for inflation. The group is calling for “a minimum of 4.5%, retrospectively applied from January 1.

It says that due to inflation of 5.2% year on year in May (according to statistics bureau INSEE), after a 4.8% increase in April, 17 million retired people have already lost “more than 10%” in revenue.

This is equal to “one month’s pension”, said Patrice Perret from Union syndicale Solidaires, on May 23 during a press conference.

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