Spain has an average of two employees per pensioner, a rate that babyboomers will weigh

Spain has two workers for each pensioner, a dependency rate that will tend to decrease in the coming decades and which currently shows territorial differences that fluctuate from almost three employed per pensioner from the Balearic Islands to the one-to-one parity in Orense.

According to Social Security data, at the end of June in Spain, there were 19.3 million employed contributors and 8.9 million pensioners, which places the dependency ratio close to 2.2.

This rate has barely oscillated one hundredth in the last decade, but in the future it will decline considerably, once the so-called baby boom generation begins to retire (those born from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s), leaving the rate close to one-to-one parity. According to the projections of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility (AIReF), the retirement of this generation will raise the number of pensioners to close to 15 million people in 2048.

Meanwhile, AIReF’s forecasts in relation to the working-age population show a situation similar to the current one, a scenario that worsens if the projections of the National Institute of Statistics (INE) or Eurostat are taken into account, which reflects a reduction between 7 and 5 million people.

It is estimated that in 2050 there will be 1.5 people of working age for each pensioner

The Bank of Spain estimates that in 2050 there will be 1.5 people of working age for each pensioner, compared to the 3 that exist today, a situation in which the increasingly high life expectancy and lower birth rate will be decisive. .

According to these forecasts, the Government is negotiating with the social agents, after commissioned by the Parliamentary Commission of the Toledo Pact, a reform of the pension system that allows it to face the increase in planned spending on benefits over the coming decades.

The dependency ratio between affiliates and pensioners has remained above 2% since there are records (1990), although it reached close to 3% in 2007, the year from which it has moderated until the current situation.

In the last decade, the relationship between employed contributors and pensioners has not changed, because the increase in almost one million recipients of a pension has been offset by that of almost two million workers.

Six million retirement pensions

In detail, the bulk of contributors is framed in the general regime (14.7 million), while there are 3.3 million self-employed, 64,681 workers from the Sea regime, and 1,068 from the Coal regime. Of the total of these pensioners, the majority receive retirement pensions (6.03 million people), followed by recipients of widowhood (1.59 million), permanent disability (943,688), orphanhood (325,989), and in favor of relatives ( 42,722).

According to Social Security data, the annual growth rate of the average Social Security affiliation (4.7%) is almost five times higher than the growth of the number of pensions (1.02%).

Differences by territories

Although the ratio between employed persons and pensioners in the national territory stands at 2.16, the regions show differences that show which are the oldest or the most dynamic in terms of employment.

Thus, the lowest dependency ratios are recorded in the single-province communities of the Balearic Islands (with 2.99 workers for each pensioner) and Madrid (2.97) or in Almería (2.94), while the highest is recorded in Orense ( 1.08), Lugo (1.25) and León (1.27).

The following table shows, by autonomous community and province, the number of employed affiliates registered with Social Security on the last day of June, the number of pensioners on June 1, and the dependency ratio between both.

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