The Pensioners' Party (HSU) and the Peasant Party (HSS) proposed two bills on Thursday in Croatia's Parliament calling for increase in state-paid family pensions, i.e. pensions inherited by widowed spouses.
The bills call for a 10 percent increase in family pension allowances, plus a pension supplement in the amount of 50 percent of the allowance which the deceased spouse used to receive.
“The implementation of the two bills would require 1.2 billion kuna (€160 million) a year, which is demanding and challenging – but it is not too much, considering the injustice caused to those people,” MP Silvano Hrelja (HSU) told reporters.
The first bill foresees that a surviving spouse would be eligible for 50 percent of their deceased spouse’s state pension, as an additional monthly payment on top of their own pension.
The other bill proposes that the surviving partner is given the option to choose whether they want to replace their own pension with 80 percent of their deceased spouse’s pension – an increase from the currently allowed 70 percent.
Poverty is increasing in Croatia, Hrelja said, particularly among the elderly and ill, warning that the average family pension amounts to 2,329 kuna (€308) or 500 kuna (€66) less than the average pension, and 800 kuna (€105) less than the average age-based state pension.
(€1 = 7.56 kuna)