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The recent presentation of the Polish government’s plans concerning the future of the compulsory open-ended retirement funds, or OFE, has – understandably enough – elicited lively discussion in the media. The first editorial and analytical comments of prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki’s proposals adopt the perspectives of the capital markets, of the state budget, of the funds themselves, and of the fund managers. The perspective of the OFE participants, meanwhile, does not seem to attract nearly as much attention, leaving the participants themselves to vent their emotions on various online forums. And it is their perspective that ought to be first and foremost on everybody’s mind.

In their highly charged enunciations, many OFE participants take the position that they are being robbed – sometimes in as many words. Such strong terms ought to be rooted in reality. Leaving aside for a moment whether the government’s proposals could have been any different – perhaps more advantageous to the fund participants, to the broader capital market, or to the Polish pensions system as a whole – let us take a moment to consider what the OFE actually are and what the proposed changes might entail for the participants. (...)

Full text is available in Dziennik Gazeta Prawna.