ITALY/EUROPE - The European Commission has confirmed today it will take legal action against Italy over the country's "discriminatory" provisions on pension age.
The EC will send Italy a "letter of formal notice" - which is the first legal step the EC has to take following a country's failure to comply with an ECJ ruling. (Global Pensions; June 17, 2009)
European Union commissioner for equal opportunities Vladimír Špidla said: "Equal pay for women and men is a founding principle of the EU, but more than seven months after the ECJ ruled Italy's civil service pension scheme to be discriminatory, the authorities have yet to act.
"Italy needs to bring its legislation into line with the Court's ruling as soon as possible or risks further legal action."
On November 13, the ECJ ruled against Italy for allowing women to receive their pension benefits five years earlier than men.
Under the pension scheme managed by the INPDAP (National Provident Institution for the Employees of Public Authorities), the general pension age for men is 65 and for women 60.
Italy will have 60 days to reply to the letter of formal notice.
A spokesperson for the minister of welfare did not immediately return calls and emails seeking comment.
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