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Military retirees' pensions to receive new funding: official

ROC Central News Agency

2016/08/23 22:45:19

Taipei, Aug. 23 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has instructed the Cabinet to deal with the reform of the pension program for military retirees separately from those for civil servants and public school teachers and make a special budget for that purpose when necessary, according to the veterans affairs minister Tuesday.

Lee Shying-jow (李翔宙), head of the Veterans Affairs Council, said the president told him to handle the matter on four principles in early August after being briefed on the veterans' views.

First, Lee said the military retirees' pensions should be operated independent of those of civil servants and public school teachers. The media often link the reform of the military retirees' pension program to those of public functionaries and public school faculty.

Second, Lee said the president has asked the government to set aside a special budget for the pension fund for people who have retired after four to nine years of voluntary military service. The fund has at times experienced shortfalls, and Tsai wants to make sure benefits for former voluntary servicemen and women are not affected.

Third, according to Lee, the Ministry of National Defense should put forth a proposal for delaying the retirement age for military personnel as well as the time they can begin receiving the pension.

Fourth, a minimum level should be set for paying veterans a monthly pension, such as NT$20,000 (US$630), NT$25,000 or NT$30,000. Tsai made the directive after hearing that some veterans are paid only NT$20,000 and yet could face cuts in the future as the government is considering an "overall cut" for all public sector pensioners.

(By Lu Hsin-hui and S.C. Chang)

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