At the beginning of this year, 3.4 million people were in receipt of state pension income in Belgium. Of these, some 2.1 million payments were for retired people, 643,000 were amounts for the self-employed and 594,000 for former civil servants.
This is indicated today (Wednesday) in De Tijd and L’Echo and is based upon figures from Daniel Bacquelaine’s department. He is a federal MR deputy and the Minister for Pensions.
However, the actual overall number of pensioners is a lower number. This is because those who have had a mixed career (for example as a civil servant and employed in the private sector) receive different combinations of payments. They are thus counted several times in these statistics.
Nobody knows the exact number of retired people. However the Pensions Department estimates the figure at 2 million Belgians. The publications observe that this means in Belgium, for every two people that work, one is a pensioner. Although the exact figure is highly questionable, it is thought that 1 in 5 Belgians are retired.
With the increase in both life expectancy and the ageing of baby-boomer generation pensioners, this group of pensioners continues to swell. The total number of pension recipients (3.4 million) has increased by 13% in five years. Simultaneously, overall state pension costs have increased by 7.3 billion euros, reaching 44.2 billion euros this year.