The French will have to work two years longer before retiring and the rich will pay higher taxes in an effort to drag France's welfare budget out of the red, the government said on Wednesday in a long-awaited pension reform.
Under the terms of the plan, which is likely to meet stiff union resistance, the minimum retirement age will be gradually lifted to 62 by 2018 against 60 at present, Labor Minister Eric Woerth told reporters. "Working longer is inevitable," Woerth said. "All our European partners have done this by working longer. We cannot avoid joining this movement." (Reuters)