The already precarious situation of pensioners in Chile will get even worse if a controversial initiative is approved. Under the new plan, the elderly would mortgage their homes to increase their meagre pensions, most of which come from prívate pension funds, and which average 230 dollars a month.
Two of the promises made 16 years ago when El Salvador’s pension system was privatised have failed to materialise: There was no expansion of social security coverage and no improvement in pensions. Now pressure is growing for a reform of the system.
When Hiroko Taguchi retired this past April, at the age of 64, from her job as an insurance sales agent, she joined the rapidly growing ranks of Japan’s aging women who now outnumber their male counterparts.
Carolina Poalo strikes the dry earth over and over with her hoe, her frail body bent almost double. She is determined to begin planting. During the long, dry season in Mozambique, she and her two young grandchildren have eaten little but cassava leaves.
Luisa Gutiérrez, 65, dances a frenzied mambo on an unusual dance floor: a street in the Nicaraguan capital. Dozens of cars line up behind her, honking their horns impatiently, while she, surrounded by elderly people with canes, walkers and protest signs, dances to demand a government pension.
The Argentine pension system, renationalised in 2008, now covers more than 90 percent of people of retirement age, the highest coverage in Latin America. But analysts are concerned about its sustainability.