The East German states raised around 2.5 billion euros for the additional and special pensions of the GDR last year. The Ministry of Finance in Saxony-Anhalt gave these figures at the request of the German Press Agency. In this federal state alone, 396 million euros were incurred.

Prime Minister Reiner Haseloff (CDU) called on the federal government to relieve the states. “Pension law is federal law.” The eastern states should no longer be “disproportionately burdened to correct construction errors in the unification treaty”.

In GDR times there were 27 supplementary pension schemes for individual professional groups, for example from the healthcare sector. There were special pensions for members of the German People’s Police, among others. In total, several hundred thousand people in Germany now benefit from the payments. The benefits were transferred to the statutory pension insurance after reunification.

Initially, 60 percent of the costs for supplementary care were covered by the eastern German states and 40 percent by the federal government. At the beginning of 2021, the federal government increased its share to 50 percent. As a result, the total burden on the eastern countries in 2021 has fallen somewhat compared to previous years. While around 2.9 billion euros were still due in 2020, it was around 400 million euros less in 2021.

The traffic light coalition of SPD, Greens and FDP in the federal government has the topic in mind, but the coalition agreement remains vague in terms of further relief. On the other hand, the plans for a hardship fund to close gaps in justice resulting from the transfer of GDR pensions to the pension system are more concrete.