Fri, Oct 13, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Military pensions to be prioritized: Executive Yuan

By Chen Wei-han  /  Staff reporter

The Cabinet yesterday said it had finalized a draft proposal for military pension reform and reaffirmed that it would be a priority during the current legislative session, following allegations that the issue might be stalled until the next session.

The Presidential Offices’ Pension Reform Committee yesterday said that the planning of the military pension reform package had been completed, although it was yet to receive final confirmation.

Chinese-language Web site The Journalist earlier in the day said that Minister Without Portfolio Lin Wan-i (林萬億), the committee’s deputy convener, had promised Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers that the reform package would be submitted to the legislature as a priority bill this session, as negotiations with military personnel had been completed, but lawmakers had received contradictory information from Vice President Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁), the committee’s convener.

“The committee has not finished planning” and “legislation could not be completed [by the end of this year],” the Web site quoted Chen as saying.

The committee rejected the report, saying it would propose the reform package as a priority bill during the current session.

The proposal would treat pensions of active and retired personnel equally, the committee added.

The government in June passed bills to reform civil servants’ and public-school teachers’ pensions, but decided to deal with military pensions at a later date due to the unique nature of military jobs.

During a question-and-answer session at the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee, Veterans Affairs Council Director Lee Shying-jow (李翔宙) said that the council had finished drafting the reform package and had already submitted it to the Ministry of National Defense for consideration.

However, Lee said that the proposal deals with active and retired personnel separately, and that the council is responsible for drafting the retirement plans for retirees, while the ministry would put forward the whole package.

The pension plans for active and retired personnel are described in different sections of a single bill, Lee said, refusing to reveal any details of the reform package.

Many retired personnel are covered under different pension plans, complicating pension adjustments, Lee said.

The council is also planning re-employment projects for retired soldiers and officers, as they tend to retire earlier than average workers and are still fit for work, he added.

The ministry on Wednesday said that it was waiting for the council to submit a retirement plan for retired personnel, adding that it would hold meetings with active members of the armed forces about the plans next month.

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