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Valerija Korošec: “Unconditional Basic Individual Universal Child Grant for Belgium following the Slovenian approach”

Valerija Korošec. Picture credit to: DNEVNIK.

Valerija Korošec, a known sociologist and social policy analyst in Slovenia, as well as ex-presidential candidate for that country, has presented a paper entitled “Unconditional Basic Individual Universal Child Grant for Belgium following the Slovenian approach”, at the International Conference on Universal Child Grants, which took place in Geneva from 6th through 8th of February 2019.

This paper’s abstract reads as follows:

This paper presents some evidence for developed countries suggesting that a universal, unconditional and uniform basic income (UBI) approach is more effective than a means-tested, conditional and targeted benefit system in addressing child poverty.

In accordance with the aim of the International conference (2019) on Universal Child Grants (UCGs) a policy design for Universal Child Benefit for Belgium is outlined. It follows the concept of Universal Basic Income Proposal for Slovenia (KOROŠEC, 2010), for which the simulation already showed that a UBI approach is more effective than means-tested, conditional and targeted benefits. The findings of KOROŠEC (2010) fit well with those of the OECD (2017) study ‘Basic Income as a Policy Option: Can it add up?’ and the IMF (2017) Fiscal Monitor ‘Tackling Inequality.’ Also, the most recent study Universal Basic Income: Debate and Impact Assessment (IMF, 2018) resembles KOROŠEC (2012) up to the point of similar outlining of the necessary steps in designing the UBI policy framework.

Certain consensus starts to emerge on circumstances in which a UBI system is better than the current means-tested system for all.

The affordability study for UBI UCG in Belgium presented here (i.e. SI_UBI UCG_BE) is simulated by MEFISTO, which is a micro-simulation model for Belgium based on EUROMOD. This simulation shows that with the same amount of money (no budget change) child poverty rate drops if the current 27 schemes are replaced with a universal flat-rate child grant (200 €/month) and a 400 €/month single parent supplement. Child poverty rates drop the most in the first and second income deciles. The majority of the population is either unaffected or benefits by the simulated reform, and the Gini is slightly lower, by 0.03.

We confirm, at least for two developed countries that already have quite universal and comprehensive social security systems, Slovenia and Belgium, that within the same fiscal envelope (budget neutral) and with UBI implemented on a level just above the current Guaranteed Minimum Income scheme (GMI) a UBI system is better than the current (means-tested) system.

Valerija is also a responsible at the Institute of Macroeconomic Analyses and Development at the Slovenian Government, and coordinator of the Slovenian Universal Basic Income Network affiliate.

More information at:

Kate McFarland, “SLOVENIA: Basic Income advocate Valerija Korosec makes bid for Presidency”, Basic Income News, August 17th 2017

About Andre Coelho

André Coelho has written 365 articles.

Activist. Engineer. Musician. For the more beautiful world our hearts know it's possible.

The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN. BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.

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