No. 2




On Pension Reform through a Public Opinion Prism: Choices are Restricted by Lack of Information and Money

31 October 2000


RiTo No. 2, 2000

  • Marika Kirch

    Adviser, Research Department, Chancellery of the Riigikogu

Following up the article by Prof. Alari Purju, the author discusses public opinion towards a compulsory collecting pension.

The Riigikogu Chancellery ordered in May 2000 a survey from the polling company Saar Poll. The figures demonstrate people’s knowledge of the current pension reform (see page 194) and their support to the idea of compulsory collecting of pension funds depending on income per one member of household.(see page 195) The results of the survey indicate that the majority of the people, especially the young, are not informed of the nature of the intended reform. The young, who are the main target group of the pension reform, have a higher income but they are not informed of the reform to the extent that they would be prepared to save a part of their income for the future. Older people, on the other hand, are more informed but they do not have the money to save for their retirement. Moreover, for an older person the burden of saving would be significantly higher than for a young person. There is a situation where those who would like to save, are unable to do it, and the others who would be able to, are not prepared to support the idea of the compulsory collecting pension. But it is impossible to successfully implement social policy reforms if the people do not support them.

Full article in Estonian

Marika Kirch, born 1951, sociologist, University of Tartu 1975, Ph.D. Moscow Institute of Sociology 1984; training courses in sociology and European Union law in Estonia, USA, Germany, other. Work: senior researcher at the Institute of International and Social Research 1988-94, chief expert at the department of science and universities of the Estonian Ministry of Education 1995-97, adviser at the economic and social information department of the Riigikogu Chancellery 1997-. Affiliation: Estonian Sociologists Union, member of the Board.