Pension reform: the hardest part begins for the government

Retreat to better blast? After many ups and downs, the government attacks the new year with the most dangerous of battles: the battle of pensions. An expected December presentation of a reform aimed at lowering the legal age to leave from 62 to 64 or 65 was delayed after the Christmas holidays. A brief reprieve in the face of the hardest part of the battle and January is a month that promises to be conflicted in the face of unions and opposition re-assembled to block.

Last Saturday the soil was plowed by Emmanuel Macron during his wishes for 2023. The President of the Republic recalled the government’s rhetoric for several months. The reform is needed to “balance our system for years and decades to come” and “strengthen our pay-as-you-go pension system,” and it needs to be implemented quickly, from the end of summer 2023. the desire to go fast, not related to the economic situation. Rates are rising and it’s time to find savings after the “whatever the cost” crazy years. Minister Elisabeth Bornet go to the front to convince the French, Républicains and neutralize the opposition and trade unions. The final circle is scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday with the social partners in Matignon to close the consultation cycle.

hot month january

The game promises to be challenging. Having already rallied against lowering the retirement age, the trade unions have accumulated reasons for opposition in a few months. For them, the new method advocated by Emmanuel Macron during his re-election is now a chimera. The desire to transfer the collection of additional pension contributions from AGIRC-ARRCO to URSSAF caused surprise. The final blow came before Christmas when the draft decree on unemployment insurance reform was unveiled, with the unexpected addition of an additional twist on the nut: a 40% reduction in the benefit period if the unemployment rate falls below 6%.

Hand in hand with the left opposition, which is not going to miss the opportunity to improve their health, doing everything to block the obstacles in the way of power, the trade unions promise a hot January. Will they be able to convince the French to mobilize en masse? Inflation can dampen enthusiasm—it’s hard to lose a day’s wages when your real wage is melting like snow in the sun—or, conversely, fuel the ire of workers who feel that their situation is constantly getting worse. It also remains to convince the hostile Republican brothers, stuck between the reform that Valerie Pecresse called for during the presidential campaign, and the desire to confirm their specificity, despite the opposition of the government on this issue. Without a doubt, the coming weeks will be explosive.

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