With this opinion the EESC wants to highlight all forms of older peoples' participation in society. It recommends eliminating any barriers to their involvement and fostering their contribution. This means: increasing the offer of adapted learning for older people, namely on ICT, encouraging them to work until the retirement age and possibly beyond, provided that work environments and contractual arrangements meet their needs, valuing their role as volunteers, in particular as informal care givers, and recognising them as important consumers of goods and services.
The EESC stresses that occupational pension schemes, created as a result of decisions by the social partners, can play a very important role in ensuring that employees have additional pension provision. The EESC disagrees with the approach to IORPs purely as financial market institutions, which fails to acknowledge their important social function. A one-size-fits-all approach is not the right way of achieving the Commission's objectives given the numerous differences between pension schemes in Member States.