Trade unions are tentatively in favour of a compromise proposal on increasing the pension age to 67, according to media reports on Monday.
Lay members of the government’s SER advisory committee, which is looking at alternatives to an across-the-board increase, has proposed that people who want to retire at 65 could still be allowed to do so, but would get less money.
SER, which also includes union and employer representatives, has been given until the end of the month to come up with an alternative to the government’s plan to increase the pension age from 65 to 67 for everyone.
The SER lay members’ plan would also include an increase in the corporate pension age from 65 to 67, as demanded by employers. The new variable pension age would be phased in from 2011.
Bert van Boggelen, chairman of the CNV trade union federation, told Nos radio the unions do support the broad lines of the compromise proposal. ‘Workers have different wishes and we are now talking about an alternative which would meet them,’ he said. ‘Given them the choice and make sure it will still be reasonably possible to stop working at 65.’
Ministers say the increase is necessary to cut the budget deficit, but the unions in particular are opposed to the plan. MPs are also concerned about the effect of the increase on people doing physically tough jobs.
Ministers have said they will press ahead with their original plan if SER fails to come up with an acceptable alternative.
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