The retirement branch of Social Security recorded a deficit of 2.6 billion euros last year, ten times less than the health branch, according to the final accounts published on Wednesday by the government.
Recovering but clearly improving, the Scu shows a deficit of 24.4 billion euros in 2021, announced in a press release the Ministers of Public Accounts, Olivier Dussopt, and Health, Olivier Vran.
This is a little better than the 24.6 billion announced Tuesday by Mr. Dussopt and much less than the abyssal record of 38.7 billion in 2020.
This good health is reflected in the surpluses of the family branches (+2.9 billion) and accidents at work (+1.2 billion), but also in the limited losses of old-age insurance (-1.1 billion) and the solidarity fund old age (-1.5 billion).
That is an overall deficit of 2.6 billion euros for the retirement branch, compared to 6.2 billion in 2020. An unexpected result, while the Scu accounts committee was still counting six months ago on a loss of the same magnitude, for approximately 163 billion in expenditure.
Driven like all of the Scu by higher than expected economic growth, with a surplus of contributions and taxes as a result, the pension branch is even doing better than before the outbreak of Covid-19 (-3 billion in 2019).
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Enough to fuel the debate on a possible reform, relaunched by the president-candidate Emmanuel Macron, who wishes to push back the legal age of departure from 62 to 65 years.
The pension system is a system that is unbalanced and that loses money every year if we continue like this, Mr. Vran justified on Franceinfo on Wednesday, defending this postponement of the legal age in order to secure social security.
The resources freed up could, however, be used for other purposes, in particular bailing out the health branch, which lost another 26.1 billion euros in 2021 – including 18 billion to deal with the health crisis – with nearly 10 billion in salary increases taken linked to the Health Sgur.