MPs vote for controversial bill to raise retirement age
PR dla Zagranicy
MPs have voted to adopt amendments to the pension system in Poland, raising the retirement age for men and women, gradually from 2013, to 67 years of age.
Solidarity activists protest pension reform outside parliament, Friday: photo - PAP/Tomasz Gzell
Currently men can retire at 65 and women at 60 years old.
The amendment put forward by the ruling Civic Platform/Polish Peasant’s Party (PSL) coalition was voted for by 268 MPs, with 185 against and two abstentions.
The bill now goes to the Senate, the upper house of parliament.
The Solidarity trade union, which alongside the opposition Law and Justice (PiS) and Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) parties, bitterly oppose the move, which is designed, says the centre-right government, to re-balance a growing demographic imbalance between the number of people working in Poland and those you have retired, as the Polish population ages.
Solidarity activists have camped out for the last three days opposite the parliament building in Warsaw in protest against the draft law and have vowed to disrupt events during the Euro 2012 football championships.
The bill stipulates that from 2013 the retirement age will increase by three months each year, with men reaching the target retirement age of 67 years in 2020, and women in 2040.
The junior coalition partner, PSL, won a concession from the senior partner Civic Platform to allow for so-called ‘partial retirement’, whereby women could draw part of their pension at 62 years old if they have worked for 35 years and men at 65 years if they have paid insurance for 40 years. (pg)