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Rich pensioners should pay more, Labour leader says

Tuesday 05 February 2013

Well-heeled Dutch pensioners should not be exempt from making an extra financial contribution ‘in these difficult times’, Labour leader Diederik Samsom told a television current affairs show on Monday evening.

The government has been under fire from opposition parties for the cumulative effect of its cuts on pensioners’ spending power.

‘The last thing we need in these times is to pitch young against old,’ Samsom said. This is why older people with a private pension are being asked to pay more, the Labour MP said.

Spending power

Last month, family spending institute Nibud said almost everyone will have less money to spend this year, the fourth year in succession spending power has gone down.


People who took early retirement and parents with children at daycare centres will be hardest hit, Nibud said. On average, people will have 2% less cash in their pockets, but the drop could be as high as 7.7% for some.



Earlier in the day, Samsom caused uproar when he told people at a meeting organised by women’s magazine Libelle that the over-50s are the richest people in the Netherlands.

The over-50s now own 30% to 40% of the country’s assets and should pay more, he told the meeting. The Labour leader did not, apparently, say what proportion of assets are owned by people over the age of 65.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

It's because pensioners have been working their butts off, saving for their retirement, and not living beyond their means! That's why they have more! How about younger people just learn to do the same. I have neighbors that own a Mercedes, and Cadillac Escalade and they cry about how to pay for child care and their mortgage!

By M | 5 February 2013 9:20 AM

Of course they should pay more. Were I well-off I'd expect to pay more as well.

By groverpm | 5 February 2013 9:39 AM

When the over 16's have worked for 45+ years to buy a house and pay off their debts, they too will be in the "richest people in NL" group. They then will be financially secure enough to support their children and grandchildren start on the ladder, and not be a burden on society. The over 50's are financially stable and richer than someone 30 years their junior, but "rich" they are not! Get a life Samson instead of trying to get votes.

By jaycee | 5 February 2013 9:42 AM

One of the reasons I left UK was the Labour Party under Tony Blair who seemed intent on punishing hard work and now I see the left wing aprties here are follwoing suit.

If you are a high earner and have worked all your life to ensure a comfortable retirement why should you pay extra. During your working life you are generally paying higher taxes to support the "less fortunate" so in retirement that burden should fall on someone else. I am sick of these politicians who mis manage the public purse and then expect high earners or people who carefully planned their future to bail them out. The pain should be felt by all, low earners, no earners also

By Brit Colin | 5 February 2013 11:01 AM

Those rich pensioners have more because they worked during years that the sky was the limit. There was a time when you could buy a house, sell it a few years later with a huge profit. Lots of these rich pensioners could stop working while in their fifties, using the VUT. Something unheard of these days. This group of people is the last we should feel sorry for, especially since none of these measures will prevent them from leading a comfortable lifestyle.

By pepe | 5 February 2013 12:21 PM

I am widow and have an income of 99.48 euro per month. I was told I have to finish eating my house before I would get any help from the sociaal dienst. Is that the right way to treat people older than 55? (I will 62 end March). I worked all my life, some here, some overseas. My husband started paying taxes since 1951. I think he would turn in his grave if he realized that his widow now has virtually nothing to live on. I know a young man who just got a flat and he gets money for his laminate floor and furnitures. WHY? he is unemployed. So am I unemployed.

By Cindy | 5 February 2013 3:31 PM

I'm sick of people who think that the harder they work, the richer they get. And who put "less fortunate" in quotation marks.

And you really think the world is just the same for young people now as it was for us a few decades ago? I don't think so. We had cheaper tuition, better summer jobs, cheaper housing, better jobs after graduation...One stupid neighbour is not an entire generation.

By CW | 5 February 2013 3:48 PM

The Politicians should set an example and take a pay cut,what is good for the goose is good for the gander.

By Pete expat | 5 February 2013 5:21 PM

@M: I am SO SICK of this overgeneralization, not everyone outlives their means. There are also people that have NOTHING due to no fault of their own. Losing your job due to company or government cutbacks does not mean you're a drain on society. Stop generalizing, not everyone is like your neighbour. Some of us are honest and hardworking, just unlucky.

By Stupid | 5 February 2013 9:02 PM

I agree. Under the scenario that everyone out there are working hard, the really top high earners (incomes that exceed one million) should pay more. Usually they are those sitting in the high ivory towers not sweating out.

By ufo | 6 February 2013 9:09 AM

Maybe i am not completely inburgered, but al i see is "punish the worker" and " support the lazy" ... Nederland is now Nederland because of the beautifull old people ,nice dressed , clean ,speaking an understandable and correct dutch ,they were hard-working ...now let's punish them .
When this old generation will be no more ,beware...

By rumpeltstiltskin | 6 February 2013 2:14 PM

The allowance for tax-free income is higher for those who work than those who do not, so ALL non-workers with an income (other than benafits)pay slightly more tax anyway!

By Sadie | 6 February 2013 5:42 PM

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