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Statement in connection with the letter of the EC on retirement age

08-08-2017

The Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Policy is preparing a response to the letter of Commissioners Marianne Thyssen and Vera Jourova of 4 August 2017. The Ministry received this letter on 7 August 2017.

 

There is no doubt that the provisions introducing different retirement age for women and men are correct and in line with social expectations as well as the Polish tradition and the initial state, before 1 October 2017, and thus also in the period when Poland joined the European Union.

 

Even though the retirement age for men and women has been made equal in other EU countries, different age applies in Austria, Poland, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Lithuania, Romania and Great Britain.

 

The retirement age of 60 for women and 65 for men being restored, analogous to the one applicable until the entry into force of the act increasing the retirement age in 2012, was functioning in Poland for cultural and social reasons, also when our country joined the European Union, and has been in force throughout our membership in the EU. In spite of the gradual increase in retirement age, a differentiated retirement age will still be maintained in the years to come.

 

Directive 79/7/EEC of 19 December 1978, indicated by the EC, has been in force for almost 40 years (over 38), and since Poland's accession to the EU (since 2004), it has also applied to our country. Article 7 of this Directive settles the issue that the Directive does not violate the right of Member States to exclude determination of the retirement age from its scope.

 

Retirement is subject to individual decision of the entitled person and then his/her request. Retirement is a choice, not an obligation or compulsion. Women decide when to retire on their own.

 

After the restoration of the retirement age from 1 October this year, there will still be a 4-year protection period for all employees.

 

The Ministry of Family is conducting a broad information campaign on pensions, providing the knowledge necessary to make a decision. This individual choice depends on the personal situation of the insured person and is associated, inter alia, with expectations regarding future retirement benefits, assessment of health condition, family or financial circumstances.

 

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