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Volume 450: debated on Tuesday 24 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will compensate Gibraltarian workers who continued to pay into the Gibraltar Social Insurance Fund after 1969 on the same terms as Spanish workers who stopped paying into the fund in 1969. (95257)

The Trilateral Agreement reached in Cordoba on 18 September provides a settlement to the long running issue of pensions paid to Spanish workers affected by the 1969 border closure. The Government already pay pensions to this group under a 1996 agreement. As part of the Cordoba settlement the Government will offer a lump sum payment to these pensioners as an incentive for them to leave the Gibraltar Social Insurance Fund (GSIF). The Government will then make uprated payments to those who leave the GSIF.

Future payments to Gibraltarian pensioners are a matter for the Government of Gibraltar, who pay their current pensions. To this end, the Chief Minister has already announced that the Government will uprate the pensions of all those in the GSIF from April 2007.