Age of retirement in Spain extended

The Spanish parliament has given its final seal of approval to the law on extending the age of retirement in Spain following the ratification of 40 amendments in the Senate. The government was only able to push through this legislation with the support of CiU. However, the PP, PNV, ERC, IU, ICV, BNG and UPyD still maintain their opposition to the legislation on extending the age of retirement because they believe that it damages workers rights and reduces pensions at the same time as giving no guarantee to the sustainablility of the social security system in Spain. The Minister for Work and Immigration, Valeriano Gómez, denies that the new legislation reduces pensions and said that payments would be higher in 2027 when the changes in the law come fully into effect. According to Gómez, the reforms to the law on pensions guarantees that in the future more pensions will be paid out and that by 2040 or 2050 pensions would be triple the amount they are now despite the fact that by this date it is forecast that there will be at least 18 million pensioners in Spain.

Gómez also stressed that these aspects of the new legislation were guaranteed as much by social agents as by parliament itself and said that all the measures would be progressively introduced over 15 years between 1st January 2013 and the end of 2027. Other new aspects of the law include the recognition of a period of up to 5 years of contributions for mothers who have given up work to look after children as well as integrating home workers into the social security system. As a result of the CiU supporting the government over this legislation the government has agreed to pass over to the control of the regional authorities buildings belonging to social security which are used for medical assistance which were previously in the hands of the autonomous administrations – 150 buildings will be affected in Catalonia.