INCLUDING: FRANCE - Special retirement benefits: fishermen and miners will not be affected; CHINA - State pension profits rise
FRANCE – Special retirement benefits: fishermen and miners will not be affected
In an interview with Xavier Bertrand, French labour minister, the Journal du dimanche (JDD) has reported that “fishermen and miners” will not be affected by President Sarkozy’s proposed reforms to the ‘régimes spéciaux’ public-sector pension schemes.
M. Bertrand said that due to the particular hardness of their work “the life expectancy of these workers is lower than elsewhere, and this must be taken into account.” Currently, there are about 40,000 fishermen contributing to and 72,000 drawing pension funds. Among miners, there are some 13,000 contributors and 370,000 beneficiaries. The average retirement age for both professions is 50-55.
The Rail Workers Union plans to go ahead with a strike on 18 October in protest over the reforms.
CHINA – State pension profits rise
China Daily has reported that China’s pension fund has returned 12% on its overseas investments since the start of the year. This is part of a 15.2% profit for the first half of the year, which generated US$19.7bn.
According to the National Council for Social Security Fund (NCSSF), China’s pension fund is now worth over US$61bn at current market valuations. However, the NCSSF stated that the fund needed to reach $266bn in order to fully meet its social security obligations.
The Royal Society of Arts (RSA) has reignited the debate on the introduction of flat-rate pensions tax relief - saying a 30% flat rate would be progressive, cost-neutral and leave three-quarters of earners better off.
This week's edition of Professional Pensions is out now
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