The Minister of Labor and Social Solidarity Giorgos Katrougalos has argued that the new pensions, of about 384 euros, correspond to the poverty line set by the European Union, which is 60% of the average wage.

According to the Minister though, who spoke to Skai on Wednesday morning, the final sum paid out will be greater, since it will include funds from the pensioner’s contributions. The national pension will also increase in accordance to the rate of inflation and suggested that this may happen after the second half of 2016. When pressed though, Mr. Katrougalos admitted that the sum of 384 euros does not currently cover pensioner needs.

Later on the Minister explained that new pensioners will not be receiving the EKAS benefit (which is gradually being phased out), while older pensioners will qualify for relief measures such as being exempt from medicine contributions. Mr. Katrougalos also noted that negotiations are under way over settlement in 100 installments, commenting that the “system of 100 installments has not ended”.