Friday, January 12, 2007

They're hiring in Abu Dhabi

It may be a Maynard G Krebs moment for the French; Work...Work!?!!

France's next government will have to persuade workers to stay at work much longer if the country's generous pension system is to survive into the 21st century, a top advisory body warned on Thursday.

....Employment rates among France's 55-64 year-olds stand at 37.8 percent, among the lowest in the European Union, where the average is 42.5 percent, due to a relatively low legal age of retirement, at 60, and high unemployment.

....This year the pensions deficit is expected to reach 3.5 billion euros (4.5 billion dollars), compared to 2.4 billion last year, as the system is stretched by an ageing workforce and unemployment of 8.7 percent.

By 2050, the system will need an injection of between two and five percent of gross domestic product (GDP), or between 30 and 80 billion euros, as the active population falls relative to the inactive population, it predicted.

From 2008, the report warned it would be a "strategic" imperative to improve French employment rates among senior workers, as well as tackling unfair privileges on a case-by-case basis.

Though the age of retirement in the private sector is 60, those in the public sector leave far earlier, from age 45 in the armed forces and civil service, and from age 50 in the state-owned rail and energy sectors.

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