Macron’s pension reform plans gets right-wing backing

Macron’s pension reform plans gets right-wing backing |

Right-wing party Les Républicains confirmed it will back the much-delayed pension reform promised by President Emmanuel Macron, meaning that after months of uncertainty, it could now be passed with a parliamentary majority.

The pension reform bill, among Macron’s key campaign promises, will be presented before the National Assembly on Tuesday.

The reform is intended to recalibrate pensions spendings, which is expected to reach a deficit in the next 25 years, a report from the French pensions watchdog found in 2022. The government claims that raising the minimum retirement age is one way to ensure the entire system does not run out of cash.

“The budgetary, demographic and economic situation requires this reform,” Les Républicains President Eric Ciotti told the Journal du Dimanche on Sunday.

“I, therefore, hope to be able to vote for a fair reform that saves our retirement system by distribution,” he added.

He added that the “government right” has always defended the idea of a reform that leads to more work, referring to the reform that aims to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64.

But support from the right-wing party will only be granted if its demands are accepted.

These include having access to the minimum pension of €1,200 for new entrants and “retroactively for current retirees who benefit from the most modest pensions”.

Moreover, the reform should be “spread over two five-year periods”, according to Ciotti, with the legal retirement age being raised to 63 in 2027 and 64 in 2032.

Macron’s pension reform plans gets right-wing backing |

French unions warn of ‘major social conflict’ over Macron’s pension reform

The pension reform has been a bone of much contention in France over the last few months, leading to unions last week warning of a “major social conflict” if it is passed. In early December, a group of unions said they were “ready to mobilise” over the reform which they said comes “at a time when the social, environmental and economic context is particularly difficult for a growing part of the population.”

The unions expected a large part of the population to join them in opposing “any increase in the legal retirement age and any increase in the contribution period” and called for it to be changed and postponed.

France is one of the few EU member states that has not raised the retirement age, with most EU countries having a statutory retirement age of 65 years. Germany, Spain, and the Netherlands have a retirement age of 66 years, while Italy’s is 67.

Public Accounts Minister Gabriel Attal reacted to Ciotti’s announcement on Sunday on France TV, praising the “responsibility” of the opposition. He also dismissed having agreed with the Republicains.

Macron, Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne and Labour Minister Olivier Dussopt continued discussions on the reform throughout the weekend and hope that after the bill goes to the Senate, the reform will be in force by summer.

(Hugo Struna |


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