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Comparison of pensions across the European Union by country

Pension systems are different in each country: retirement age, minimum years of contributions, amount of pension (or rather: percentage of salary). The rules are different depending on the number of years (or trimesters) accumulated and on whether you have contributed in other countries.


Pension rates as a percentage (Europe)

Pension rates differ from country to country. Let us focus here on different cases in the European Community. The graph below is derived from analyses of official OECD data and depicts net pension replacement rates in the EU.

Note that these percentages imply having contributed the number of years (or trimesters) required to obtain a full pension. The details of this compiled information can be found in the table below.

Retirement ages

Country Net replacement rates Retirement age
Germany 51,9% 65 years + 8 months
Austria 89,9%

Men: 65 years old

Women: 60 years old

Belgium 66,2% 65 years old
Bulgaria 89,3%

Men: 64 years + 3 months

Women: 61 years + 6 months

Cyprus 82,8% 65 years old
Croatia 53,8%

Men: 65 years old

Women: 62 years + 6 months

Denmark 70,9% 66 years old
Spain 83,4% 65 years old
Estonia 53,1% 63 years + 6 months
Finland 64,2% 63 years + 3 months
France 73,6% 62 years old
Greece 51,1% 62 years old
Hungary 84,3% 64 years + 6 months
Ireland 35,9% 66 years old
Italy 91,8% 67 years old
Latvia 54,3% 63 years + 9 months
Lithuania 31%

Men: 64 years old

Women: 63 years old

Luxemburg 90,1% 65 years old
Malta 48,2% 63 years old
The Netherlands 80,2% 66 years + 4 months
Poland 35,1%

Men: 65 years old

Women: 60 years old

Portugal 89,6% 66 years + 5 months
Czech Republic 60,3%

Men: 63 years + 8 months

Women: betsween 59 years + 8 months and 63 years + 8 months

Romania 41,6%

Men: 65 years old

Women: 61 years old

Slovakia 65,1% 62 years + 6 months
Slovenia 57,5% 65 years old
Sweden 53,4% 61 years old

How to find out more?

Several factors must be taken into account when calculating the amount of the pension:

  • The number of years or trimesters accumulated in your country of residence
  • The number of years or trimesters worked abroad (in some countries, such as Luxemburg, Germany and many others, a certain number of years must be accumulated to be entitled to claim the contributions for those trimesters worked)
  • The official retirement age in your country of residence and in the countries where you have worked (if you retire at the age of 62 in France and have worked for 7 years in Denmark, you will not receive your Danish pension until you reach retirement age in Denmark, that is to say, 4 years later)
  • The total number of trimesters accumulated during your career entitles you to a certain percentage of (partial, total) retirement.


Some useful links to find out more about retirement in the different countries of the European Community:

  • The government and official websites of the countries in which you have worked
  • OECD Data – Public Pensions
  • The CLEISS (Centre for European and International Liaison on Social Security) website

Illustrations: Shutterstock


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