Malta is the EU country with the second-lowest spending on pensions, following Ireland, according to new data published by Eurostat.

While Ireland spends just 4.5 per cent of its GDP on pensions, Malta spends 6.4 per cent.

Hungary and Lithuania follow, with seven per cent and 7.1 per cent respectively.

These figures are far below the 12.9 per cent average across the EU.

Greece tops the list, spending 16.4 per cent of its GDP on pensions, followed by Italy (16.3 per cent), Austria (15 per cent) and France (14.9 per cent).

In total, approximately €1,882 billion was spent on pensions across EU countries in 2021. This represents a 2.8 per cent increase over pension expenditure a year prior.

In 2021, 27.2 per cent of the EU population were pension beneficiaries.

When looking at the different pension categories, pensions relating to old age were by far the largest category in the EU, accounting for 79.9 per cent of all pension expenditure and 80.3 per cent of beneficiaries.

Survivors’ pensions were the second largest category, accounting for 12 per cent of expenditure and 21.3 per cent of beneficiaries, followed by disability pensions (7.9 per cent of expenditure and 12.2 per cent of beneficiaries) and unemployment pensions (0.2 per cent of expenditure and 0.1 per cent of beneficiaries).

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