The fact that the minimum wage has gradually turned into the average wage in recent years has become the reality of the country. Although the Minister of Labor and Social Security Vedat Bilgin stated that those who work with minimum wage constitute 38 percent of the total employees, calculations made from the data of the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK), including informal workers, show that the ratio of those working with wages close to the minimum wage is around 50 percent. Every year, more and more workers are among those who earn the minimum wage.
The situation in the minimum wage is similar to the lowest pension. An attempt is made to strike a balance between the lowest pension and the net minimum wage. Every year more people join the lowest pension recipients, as the lowest pension is increased more than the regular pension.
AK Party Group Deputy Chairman Mustafa Elitaş talked about the relationship between the net minimum wage and the lowest pension during the negotiations of the law proposal to increase salaries by 30 percent and to increase the minimum pension from 3,500 lira to 5,500 lira. Elitaş emphasized that while the minimum pension was 2,500 TL at the beginning of 2022, the net minimum wage was 4,253 TL, and the lowest pension corresponded to 59 percent of the net minimum wage. Elitaş noted that while the net minimum wage was increased to 5,500 TL in June last year, the lowest pension was increased to 63 percent of the net minimum wage, that is, to 3,500 liras. He pointed out that it corresponded to Elitaş stated that the ratio of the lowest pension to the net minimum wage has improved by up to 10 percent in the last year.
THE NUMBER OF PENSIONERS EQUAL IN POVERTY DOUBLE IN ONE YEAR
Elitaş explained that if the minimum pension was 4,500 TL, the number of people covered would be 1 million 192 thousand 186, if it was 5000 TL, 1 million 917 thousand 254 people would be covered, and if it was increased to 5,500 TL, 2 million 721 thousand people would benefit from the lowest pension application.
Elitaş said that 1.5 million people will benefit while giving information during the commission talks, where the lowest pension was increased from 2,500 lira to 3,500 lira in June last year. In the meetings held in January last year, where the lowest pension was increased from 1,500 TL to 2,500 TL, it was shared with the commission members that 1 million 266 thousand people would benefit from the lowest pension arrangement.
From another perspective, it is seen that the number of people receiving the lowest pensions has doubled in one year, from 1.266 thousand to 2 million 721 thousand. Moreover, despite the fact that the pension was increased by 30 percent in January, which was above inflation, the dramatic increase in the number of those who received the lowest pension was remarkable.
According to the data of the Social Security Institution, as of October, the number of retirees on a file basis (widows and orphans are considered a single file) is 13 million 95 thousand people. Accordingly, 1 out of every 5 retirees in 2023 is among the lowest pension recipients.
MINIMUM MONEY WITH MINIMUM SSI 6 thousand 93 TL
Mustafa Elitaş, while giving information to the commission during the negotiations, noted that the lowest SSK pension was increased to 6 thousand 93 liras, and the lowest agricultural BAĞ-KUR pension was increased to 5 thousand 500 liras. Elitas said:
“The cost of increasing the lowest pension from 3 thousand 500 liras to 5 thousand 500 liras for 2023 is 21.9 billion liras, a 30 percent increase in pensions is 131.5 billion liras, the cost of applying the minimum wage support 400 liras in the January-June period is 17.1 billion liras, public servants The cost of a 30 percent increase in monthly and wages is 128.4 billion liras. It has a total effect of 300 billion liras.”