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Dutch pensioners living abroad enjoy a much longer lifespan

Canadian seniors top the list

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

AMSTELVEEN - Dutch citizens over 65 years of age who spend their retirement abroad, live longer than their counterparts remaining in the Netherlands. According to the Sociale Verzekeringsbank (SVB), a semi-government entity administrating Old Age Pensions (AOW), the average lifespan of those living abroad tops those staying at home by 18 months.

The Dutch Old Age Pension seems to have a positive influence on life expectancy in general, according to SVB statisticians. People entitled to full AOW benefits on average live about five years longer that those without such pension.

Dutch seniors living abroad - and who enjoy full AOW pensions - have an average live expectancy of 83,6 years, as compared to the Dutch ‘back home’ (81,6 years). For citizens with a smaller AOW benefit these ages respectively are 78,6 and 76,6 years.

The SVB only took into consideration the AOW benefits and excluded individual pension plans, such as enjoyed by former health care workers.

The are over 2.1 million Dutch citizens currently receiving full AOW pensions, based on having lived in the Netherlands for fifty years between the ages of 15 and 65. About 400,000 Dutch citizens receive partial AOW pensions, because they fail to meet the 50-year requirement. Every residency year adds 2 percent to AOW entitlement. Dutch citizens living abroad could meet some of these requirements, if their new country of residence signed a pension treaty with the Netherlands, as is the case with Canada, USA and Australia, among others.

The SVB figures also suggest that Dutch citizens in Canada live the longest. Their life expectancy is a few months higher than those in other emigrant destinations such as the U.S., and Australia, and retirement destinations such as Spain and France.