Pension reform remains a “priority”, warns Bruno Le Maire


“It is good that this reform does not take too long,” said the Minister of the Economy on Sunday.

Will pension reform be buried, or will it make a comeback in a different form? This week, several statements by the executive have put this highly contentious subject back in the spotlight. In an interview with Sunday Newspaper , the Minister of the Economy recalled that after the health crisis, “structural reforms“Must be quickly restarted, including”the priority […] retirees“.

This reform is vital for the future of the French distribution system, argued Bruno Le Maire. And if the change proposed last year cannot be repeated “as is“, That”does not exclude taking into account the individual situation of eachAdded the Minister.

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During the big meeting Europe 1 / CNews / Les Echos, Sunday, the boss of Bercy repeated his wish to see the “overall volume of work of the French»Increase, to ensure that the French social model is maintained. “France has a lower overall volume of work than other developed nations […] It is a choice of society, collective“, Which leads to a”relative impoverishment of the French compared to Germany, the United States», He underlined.

The pension reform should make it possible to improve this point. The Minister mentioned three pillars which must guide a future transformation: justice – a system taking into account the individual situations of each one -, flexibility – in Portugal, “the evolution of the pension system depends on the level of growth“, Cited the example of the government representative -, and the increase in the overall volume of work in France. The boss of Bercy refused to comment on a possible lowering of the legal retirement age, suggesting that “options»Alternatives existed.

Bruno Le Maire remained evasive as to the timing and form of this transformation. “It is up to the President of the Republic of [les] to define», He kicked in touch. But this file being a “priority, it is good that this reform does not take too long“. He also did not comment on a return of the file on the profession before the next presidential election, leaving the field open to Emmanuel Macron. “The DNA of the President of the Republic and of the majority […] is the in-depth transformation of the country“He simply remarked, refusing to stay”arms crossed on his chair“.

On BFMTV, this Sunday, the Minister of Solidarity and Health stressed the “absolute necessity»To reform the pension system. “I consider that we have a few months and five years left“To achieve this goal, said Olivier Véran, who seems to be counting on a re-election of Emmanuel Macron next year. “The reforms will not stop in January 2022 […] We never backed down, it ain’t gonna start nowHe also said.

Uncertainty about the future of the reform

Still, the most complete vagueness surrounds the future of this project which had brought down hundreds of thousands of opponents in the street at the end of 2019. The health crisis put an abrupt halt to the examination of the file in Parliament. Since then, the executive seems to be walking on eggshells. The “immediate priority is to overcome the health, economic and social crisis that we are going through“And which results in”a lot of uncertainty“, Underlined the Minister of Labor, Élisabeth Borne, last December. Bruno Le Maire, for his part, has repeated on several occasions that this transformation was “a priority“, As well as the former minister François Bayrou, who considered, on Saturday, that she was”inevitable“And that it would be”at the heart of the presidential campaign“.

The social partners are also cautious. “Pension reform will be necessary at one time or another“, Judged the head of the CPME, François Asselin, on Saturday, adding that it would be”very difficult to initiate this reform by the end of the five-year term“. The unions, for their part, called on the government to put this issue aside, otherwise the social conflicts would start again.

Thursday, Emmanuel Macron declared that he did not think that “the reform which was initially envisaged can be resumed as it is“. Nevertheless, it is “too early“To comment on the future of the reform for which”nothing is excludedAt this point, he said. According to a government source quoted by AFP, the head of state should give more details on his intentions in early July, with probably the launch of a social summit.

Also to see – Bruno Le Maire: “France must work more

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