Six proposals for support in inflation advanced by ministry

Six proposals have been prepared by the Ministry of Welfare (LM) in order to support the population with price increases, Latvian Radio reported on April 27.

The rise in prices has affected food products and energy resources, and other areas. In order to offset the increase in costs, the LM offers six ideas:

Proposal 1: accelerated pension indexation

Usually, pensions are indexed in October, but the LM proposal foresees doing so earlier. The Minister of Welfare Gatis Eglītis said that the increase in pensions could be 10%.  The pension rise would affect about 563,000 people.

Proposal 2: One-off support for seniors annually

Once a year, in December, another benefit could be issued to people who get smaller pensions.

Proposal 3: Raising transport benefits for disabled persons

Raising the transport benefit for disabled persons is usually carried out twice a year. This year, LM offers an additional payment of €50, while the benefit from next year could be raised from €80 to €105. 35,000 inhabitants receive such benefits.

Proposal 4: Reform of minimum income

The reform of minimum income levels would affect the system of how it is raised. The minimum income thresholds would be updated annually from January 1 relative to the average income.

Proposal 5: Review of Housing Benefit

In LM's view, the state cofinancing for municipalities could represent 50% of the housing benefit. Housing benefits for different categories of households could grow from next year.

Proposal 6: Raising the minimum wage

An increase in the minimum wage of €500 to €640 is foreseen.

There is caution with all proposals as Saeima elections are coming this year, which is traditionally the time of promises. According to the Ministry of Welfare, most points should be assessed in the next year's budget process, and this is also agreed by the Ministry of Finance (Finance Ministry), indicating that additional sources of funding should also be sought for the implementation of ideas.

 

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