VILNIUS – Lithuania should carry out an audit of its pension reform launched five years ago and evaluate the results before considering any changes to the the system, President Gitanas Nauseda said on Thursday.
The president's comment comes amid public outrage over the automatic inclusion of people into the additional pension accumulation system.
"Instead of rushing to discuss what could be done anew, we have to, first of all, perform a certain analysis, an audit of the results of this reform to see to what extent they meet the expectations that were placed on this reform, and then to make certain adjustments if this proves necessary," he told a news conference.
Nauseda noted that the Lithuanian pension system has been reformed repeatedly, but the result "is not one to be proud of".
"The pension reform is not something that we have to constantly improve and change without giving it too much thought," the president said.
"We have to stop, take stock and only then make the next step, because this is a system that we have reformed a lot of times and so far the result is not something we can be very proud of," he added.
Figures from the Lithuanian Investment and Pension Funds Association (LIPFA) show that the weighted average return on the assets of Lithuania's second-pillar pension funds was negative at minus 13.8 percent last year.
Market experts say, however, that a downturn is always followed by an upturn.
Around 1.4 million working people participate in the second pillar pension system.