The pension reform in France must be applied “by the end of the year”according to what the president of the country said on Wednesday, Emmanuel Macronwhich forced the approval of the text in parliament without a vote.
In an interview broadcast on national television, Macron said that the text that raises the retirement age from 62 to 64 years “it will continue its democratic path” with the review of the Constitutional Council in the coming weeks.
“There is a certain cynicism when big companies have such exceptional benefits that they can even buy their own shares”, said the president.
Macron considered that these benefits explain much of the social anger of the population at the moment in which their pension reform requires them to work two years more to face the difficult situation.
The president indicated that the large electric companies already pay a contribution in this sense imposed through European regulations, but indicated that it will require it from others, although it did not detail sectors or company names.
To appease the anger of the middle classes, who do not have access to these great benefits and, at the same time, neither to state aid, he also announced a reform of the subsidy system of the most disadvantaged.
In this sense, Macron assured that “reinforced rights and duties are necessary” for those who collect these subsidies and assured that they will look for formulas to return them to the labor market as soon as possible so that they do not take forever in their collection.
These are the first public statements by the president since his government imposed the approval of the reform law last week, which caused protests in Paris and other places in France. Some of the marches turned violent.
Macron, 45, reiterated that he is convinced that the pension system must be reformed to keep it financed.
The remarks come two days after the Macron government survived two motions of no confidence in the parliament chamber.
In Marseille on Wednesday, dock workers blocked access to the port – the largest in France – blocking the way for trucks and cars, amid a heavy police presence.
At the same time, continue a Garbage collector strike in Paris which is on its 17th day. Authorities issued an order in recent days requiring workers to comply with a “minimum service” of garbage collection for sanitary reasons.
Oil shipments in France have been partially hampered due to strikes at various refineries in the west and south of the country. Gas stations in the Southeast for now are the most affected.
Unions have called for strikes and protests across the country on Thursday to demand that the government annuls the proposal on the retirement age. It is expected that this will affect regional and distance trains, as well as the Paris metro and other public transport routes.
The proposal still needs to be reviewed by the Constitutional Council before it can be implemented.
(With information from AP and EFE)
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