Elma Saiz announces the signing of a new Social Security Agreement between Spain and the US to encourage labour mobility

News - 2024.1.26

26/01/2024. Agreement between Spain and the US to encourage labour mobility. The Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, Elma... The Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, Elma Saiz, at the headquarters of the Spanish Embassy in Washington (United States)

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The Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, Elma Saiz, announced the signing of a new Social Security agreement between Spain and the United States in Washington DC - where she is on an official visit - that will be signed in the next few days.

The first bilateral agreement was signed in 1986 and has been in force since 1 April 1988. According to Saiz, "the aim is to favour the mobility of insured workers in both countries, thus stimulating bilateral economic activity."

The main new features, as she explained, affect the calculation of Spanish pensions, which will be more beneficial as there will be two calculations (the first using only the contributions in Spain and the second adding the contributions in the United States and finally paying the one that is most beneficial for the citizen). This new text also improves the calculation of the regulatory base and the period of posting, by extending it to 7 years (5 years of initial posting plus 2 years of extension for both employed and self-employed workers). In addition, the State Pension Scheme is incorporated.

The population of Spanish people resident in the United States is 192,766 people, according to the Padrón de Españoles Residentes en el Extranjero (PERE) at 1 January 2023. It is the third largest, after Argentina and France.

Satisfactory result from the three-day official visit

The announcement was made during a press conference with the media at the Spanish Embassy, where she took stock of the agenda in Washington DC between 23 and 25 January.

"I would like to highlight the highly positive assessment and the great welcome with which Spanish circular migration policies and the complementary pathways to resettlement associated with a labour contract have been received by all the bodies with which I have met," she stressed. These are measures, she added, "that represent a great guarantee by favouring the employability and inclusion of migrants."

The Spanish delegation has held meetings with the Deputy Secretary of the State Department, Richard R. Verma; with the National Security Council (NSC) of the White House; with Joe Biden's advisor, Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall; and with the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas.

Meetings were also held with key organisations such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Migration Policy Institute and the Organization of American States.

"We are clearly committed to regular, orderly, safe migration based on humanitarian principles, which requires the collaboration of all the agents involved: countries, administrations, third sector organisations and NGOs," Saiz stressed.

Hours earlier, the minister had the opportunity to chat and share reflections with a group of Spanish students at Georgetown University, where she was received by visiting professor and Prince of Asturias Professor Juan Luis Manfredi.

The minister conveyed the Government's interest in the Spanish community in the US. Proof of this, she said, is the reinforcement of the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration with a Directorate General for Spanish Citizenship Abroad and Return Policies. It is responsible, among other functions, for the management of subsidy and aid programmes for Spaniards abroad and returnees, as well as the recognition and management of economic benefits and welfare aid.

"We focus on the return plan, with measures to attract talent to Spain. Like the young students, women entrepreneurs, heads of scientific institutions, banks and global funds with whom I had the opportunity to talk yesterday at the embassy," she underlined.

"I am leaving the United States satisfied with the good feeling and the shared analyses and reflections. For the recognition of our country's project and for the hospitality," the minister concluded.

Non official translation