Minister Trenchevska said that their demands would be reviewed both by the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy and at a government session, adding that their demands for a linear increase are unconstitutional, and the demand for a minimum pension of 18,000 denars is not fair to the pensioners who are receiving this amount now, and have 35 or 40 years of service.

She pointed out that the majority of pensioners receive a minimum pension of 12,500 denars, were workers with minimum service, and received a minimum wage, and that they have not met the conditions for pension checks like pensioners with 35 or 40 years of service.

Regarding the demand for a linear increase in pensions, she said that it was unconstitutional and such a decision was annulled by the Constitutional Court in 1998. It would also burden the Fund with an additional €220 million annually, which is impossible to cover.

Pensioners who were holding protests Monday in Skopje met with the Minister of Labour and Social Policy Jovanka Trenchevska and presented their demands related to higher pensions.

The main demands are the alignment of pensions with the data published by the State Statistical Office in November 2021, a linear increase of 3,500 denars, and the minimum pension to amount to 18,000 denars instead of 12,500 denars.

The four-member delegation demanded from the Minster Trenchevska to present their demands to the Government. They explained that they are demanding a linear increase of 3,500 denars of the pension of all 336,000 pensioners in the country and that it will not be a one-time payment, and to also receive the percentage increases that will follow.

The pensioners’ representatives underlined that the average pension is very low, and the prices are very high, especially after the unfreezing of prices and since the VAT rate increased.

“I will seek information, but you, as an initiative board, should also ask for information to the Constitutional Court whether a linear increase is constitutional,” Trenchevska added.

She said that since 2022, a lot has been done for the pensioners.

“I am not saying that the pensions are very high, but from 9,000 denars the minimum pension now amounts to 12,500 denars. The new methodology was created precisely, for this reason, pensions to be increased twice a year, as the costs of living rise and as the average wage increases, pensions should also increase,” Trenchevska said.