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Macron’s success: the Senate votes on pension reform

Macron’s success: the Senate votes on pension reform

However, the outcome of the vote in the National Assembly on Thursday is uncertain.

France’s controversial pension reform cleared the first parliamentary hurdle. The Paris Senate voted 193-114 on Thursday morning to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64. The vote was expected. The final vote in the National Assembly must follow in the afternoon, as the camp of President Emmanuel Macron’s government does not have a majority of its own.

A committee made up of senators and the National Assembly reached a compromise between the two chambers on Wednesday. Reform is one of the most important projects of President Emmanuel Macron. Approval in the Senate is considered certain. In the National Assembly, the majority in favor of the project was not confirmed until the end. The government relies on votes from conservative Republicans, whose faction is divided.

Dangerous constitutional provision

The government could, if necessary, use a constitutional clause to advance reform without a vote; However, in this case, he risks a new election and a huge loss of confidence. President Emmanuel Macron conferred in the morning with party leaders in the government camp.

On Wednesday, many French people took to the streets again to protest retirement plans. According to the Ministry of the Interior, 480,000 people took part in the demonstrations across the country. Strikes continued at railways, oil refineries and garbage collection Thursday. In Paris, residents and visitors have been groaning from mountains of rubbish and stench for days.

The retirement age in France is currently 62 years. In fact, retirement starts later on average: those who haven’t paid wages long enough to get a full pension work longer. At age 67, there will be a no-deduction pension, no matter how long it has been paid – the government wants to maintain this, even if the number of years of contributions required for a full pension increases faster than previously planned. You want to increase your minimum monthly pension to around 1,200 euros. With the reform, the government wants to close the impending gap in the pension fund.

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(DPA/AFP)