The Russian authorities are reportedly exploring the possibility of preserving retirement benefits (not retirement payments) at the country’s current pension ages (55 for women and 60 for men). Sources in the government and the political party United Russia told the magazine RBC that the policy could be added as an amendment to legislation to raise the retirement age. RBC’s sources claim that additional funding would not be necessary to maintain existing pension benefits.
Russian pensioners are exempt from several taxes on real estate, transportation, and land. Senior citizens also enjoy regional benefits on public transportation and subsidies on housing and other bills.
In mid-July, carried by the political party United Russia, the State Duma voted to adopt the first reading of legislation that would raise the country’s retirement age from 60 to 65 for men by 2028, and from 55 to 63 for women by 2034. The final vote tally was 328 in favor and 104 opposed. Deliberations on amendments to the legislation are scheduled to conclude by September 24. According to sociological studies, roughly 89 percent of Russia’s population opposes the pension reform plan.
Russian federal election officials have approved the wording of five separate national referendum proposals on legislation that would raise the country’s retirement age. A referendum on pension reform will be triggered as soon as one of these groups registers 43 regional divisions and then collects two million signatures in support of the initiative (with no more than 50,000 endorsements in a single region).