Pension cuts

More than 22,000 civil servants sought retirement in 2011, while state retirees saw their pensions reduced by 12.4% during the same year.

According to data from the Directorate-General for Budget, a public servant who retired in January 2011 received an average pension of €1,359 but in December of the same year, that amount had been cut by €169 (or €1,190).

A total of 22,380 state workers filed retirement applications last year, 255 more than in 2010.

Many opted for early retirement rather than wait for the legal age of 65 years for fear of further benefit cuts.