State pays unequal pensions to retired Defence Force officers (1)
The Ministry of Defence doesn’t consider service in the post-reindependence army comparable to service in the country’s current military, which is why it pays unequal pensions to retired officers, Eesti Päevaleht reported.
Retired major of the Estonian Defence Forces Hillar Tammiste explained to Päevaleht that his service as well as that of 600 of his colleagues who retired before Apr. 1, 2013, appeared to be worth about 35% less on average than the service of those who retired after that date.
Tammiste’s example goes as follows. A major of the Estonian Defence Forces who retired three years ago today, after having worked in the military for 20 years, would now receive €566 a month. Had the same major retired just a week later, after Apr. 1, 2013, his pension would be €1147, or slightly more than twice as much.
The example may be hypothetical, but Tammiste’s calculations are based on what the situation is in reality. Looking at the Defence Forces’ hierarchy, the lowest ranks are the ones where the difference is the greatest.
Peeter Kuimet, director of the Defence Service Department of the Defence Ministry, justified the difference with the fact that the current service model meant longer service, and that it was more sophisticated and more demanding. The conditions of the two different service models and therefore also their compensation weren’t comparable, Kuimet said.
The model currently used is based on the Military Service Act confirmed by the Riigikogu on Apr. 1, 2013.