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Re-reform of Latin American Private Pensions Systems: Argentinian and Chilean Models and Lessons


  • Carmelo Mesa-Lago

    (Department of Economics, 4259 Wesley Posvar Hall, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15217, USA.)


Between 1981 and 2008, 11 countries in Latin America structurally reformed their defined-benefit, Pay-As-You-Go, public pension systems, partially or totally replacing them with defined contribution, fully funded, privately managed schemes based on individual accounts. Initial failures in design and subsequent performance of the private systems led to partial corrections, but in 2008 two countries implemented far reaching “re-reforms”: Chile maintained and improved its system, whereas Argentina closed and integrated it to the public system. Both re-reform models are evaluated based on their fulfilment of International Labour Organization social security principles: universal coverage, equal treatment, social solidarity, gender equality, benefit sufficiency, public supervision, reasonable administrative costs, social participation and financial sustainability. The Chilean model has improved the system in most of such principles while the Argentinian model has not. The potential influence of both models in the region is briefly explored.

Suggested Citation

  • Carmelo Mesa-Lago, 2009. "Re-reform of Latin American Private Pensions Systems: Argentinian and Chilean Models and Lessons," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan;The Geneva Association, vol. 34(4), pages 602-617, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:gpprii:v:34:y:2009:i:4:p:602-617

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