The government has proposed cutting child allowance, and the cash support that is presently sent to immigrant workers with children who reside abroad.
The proposal is one of several that are presented in the parliamentary report called, ‘Export of Norwegian welfare benefits’, according to Aftenposten newspaper.
It states in the report that NOK 7.1 billion is presently being sent as cash benefits to Norwegians, and foreign nationals, residing outside Norway in various European countries. Although the figure represents a small proportion of a total of NOK 418 billion spent on social security, the government wishes to focus their energies on limiting its flow. The proposal for child welfare and cash support is aimed at ‘purchasing power adjustments’ made to calculating benefits for those abroad.
‘It was never meant for these benefits to be so high that they correspond to an average annual salary in the foreign national’s home country,’ said the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Anniken Hauglie of Høyre (H).
She pointed out that the amount of child allowance and cash benefits annually accrued in Norway could correspond to 96% of an average annual salary in Poland. She didn’t comment on the fact that the average annual salary in Poland is notably low by comparison to a Norwegian average, annual salary.
Payment of child allowances and cash support abroad amount to NOK 219 million of a total of NOK 16.6 billion from the Norwegian budge. Far more goes to cover old-age pensions for Norwegians living abroad. That is where the main export volume is.
‘But we won’t touch that. Norwegian retirees can still be confident that they may enjoy the sunshine after a long working life’, said Hauglie, no doubt remaining only very dimly aware that the majority of voter support for Høyre comes from this age group.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today