Minister Gyokov: Expenditures on the 2022 State Social Insurance budget will exceed BGN 16.8 billion

Minister Gyokov

"In 2022, the average pension is expected to reach BGN 574, excluding COVID supplements of BGN 60, which will be paid to all pensioners in the period January-June. This will happen provided that no other decisions are taken to update the pensions from 1 July, other than those set in the draft budget of the State Social Insurance (SSI). This was said by the Minister of Labor and Social Policy Georgi Gyokov at a press conference after today's meeting of the National Council for Tripartite Cooperation. He stressed that "the government intends to propose other options for increasing pensions, which would lead to higher growth than the projected 6.1% from the middle of the year."

Minister Gyokov pointed out that "This year the expenditures in the SSI budget will exceed BGN 16.853 billion, of which BGN 14.120 billion are for the payment of pensions. The biggest impetus for the increase in pension costs is the changes that came into force on December 25 last year".

"From April 1, 2022, the minimum daily amount of unemployment benefits will increase from BGN 12 to nearly BGN 18. This happened after a very serious debate of the NCTC. The amount of the maximum benefit will also increase - from BGN 74.29 to BGN 85.71. The amount for raising a child under 2 years of age will also increase from BGN 650 to BGN 710. 300 million are planned for the extension of the 60/40 measure", said Minister Gyokov and added that it has so far supported "nearly 13,500 companies to save the jobs of about 327,000 workers and employees".

Minister Gyokov also presented the most important parameters of the 2022 draft budget of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, whose expenditure ceiling is BGN 2,186,996,800 and increases by nearly BGN 350 million compared to 2021. "90% of this amount is for securing social costs - benefits and allowances, social assistance and support for people. This includes targeted allowances for heating, measures for active labor market policy and for subsidizing non-financial and non-profit organizations under the People with Disabilities Act", said Minister Gyokov.

He pointed out that in addition to BGN 73 million for financing the National Action Plan for Employment, additional expenditures in the central budget of BGN 110 million are envisaged for the "Save me +" measure. Thus, the total expenditures for active policy may increase to a ceiling of BGN 183 million and approach the 2008 figures.

Minister Gyokov stressed that social expenditures increase by BGN 280 million compared to 2021 and in 2022 are planned to reach a total of BGN 984 million. Under the Personal Assistance Mechanism, an increase in the coefficient for determining the remuneration of personal assistants from 1.2 to 1.4 of the minimum wage has been reported.

He explained that it is planned to increase by more than 20% the amount of monthly allowances for raising a child until the completion of secondary education. For families with one child the allowance will increase from BGN 40 to BGN 50, for families with two children - from BGN 90 to BGN 110, for families with three children - from BGN 135 to BGN 165 and for families with four children - from BGN 145 to BGN 175. The principle of increasing the amount of allowance by BGN 20 for each subsequent fourth child in the family is preserved.

At the same time, it is proposed to increase the income criterion for receiving monthly family allowances for children by BGN 100 or over 20%. Families with an income of BGN 510 will be entitled to such support. Families with incomes from BGN 510.01 to BGN 610 will be able to receive 80 percent of the full amount of allowance, explained Minister Georgi Gyokov.