CZECH REPUBLIC - The government of the Czech Republic is planning to unveil pension reforms in a draft bill requiring people to work longer for their pensions and which it hopes will raise the State retirement age to 65 by 2030.

Fierce opposition to these latest proposals from Christian Democrats means negotiations are now expected to take six months or more to secure an agreement through parliament, according to officials at the ministry for social affairs.

Reforms were previously put in place to raise the State retirement age to 63 for men by 2013 while women will at an age between 59 and 63, depending on how many children they have, but the government is now preparing a new bill which it hopes will lead to a flat rate retirement age of 65 for both women and men because officials recognise the financial pressures of rising longevity.

Opposition parties are instead seeking a similar format to the existing retirement ages for women, so women with no children will have to reach 65 before they receive their State pension, down to 62 where they have three or more children.

At the same time as raising the retirement age, the Czech government is also proposing to increase the number of years people are obliged to work before claiming a pension from 25 to 35.

Sources at the ministry for social affairs say it is this reform is unlikely to be controversial as the average number of years people in the Czech Republic work is usually 40-42 years.

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