Australia and Greece: Social Security Agreement
Athens, 1 October 2008
The Social Security Agreement between Australia and the Hellenic Republic was signed in Australia on 23 May 2007 and following legislative and administrative processes in both countries, the Agreement enters into force on 1 October 2008.
The implementation of the new Agreement will provide improved access to the Age Pension for people in Australia and Greece, allowing people who live in either country to claim their entitlement to pensions from both countries, as well as reduce costs for businesses operating in Australia and Greece. Since the Agreement covers Australian and Greek Age Pensions, people will be able to move between Australia and Greece knowing that their pension rights are recognised in both countries.
Both countries will share responsibility and costs for the social security coverage of eligible age pensioners in their retirement years, according to their period of residence/insurance. The Agreement will help people in either country to satisfy the minimum qualifying residence period for an Australian pension and the minimum qualifying insurance period for a Greek pension. Periods of residence in Australia and periods of insurance in Greece can be added together to qualify for Australian and Greek pensions.
Approximately 50,000 people living in Australia and Greece are expected to claim an age pension from either, or both, countries and more people will benefit over time as there are around 125,000 Greek-born residents of Australia and other Australians are increasingly spending part of their working lives overseas.
The Agreement will also avoid the need for compulsory contributions to be made into both countries’ systems for seconded workers.
The text of the Agreement and answers to commonly asked questions can be found at http://www.facs.gov.au/internet/facsinternet.nsf/international/agreements-current.htm#greece
A claim form for Australian pension can be obtained from local IKA-ETAM or OGA office.
Please note that the Embassy is unable to answer specific requests for advice on eligibility or how to apply for relevant pensions. All such questions and requests for further advice and information must be addressed to:
Centrelink International Services, Australia between 0800 and 1700 hours Australian Eastern Standard Time, Monday to Friday:
13 1673 (from within Australia)
0080 0611 26209 (international free call from Greece)
+61 3 6222 3455 (from elsewhere outside Australia-reverse charge by asking the local telephone operator)
Useful internet sites: