BRASILIA – Brazil’s President-elect Jair Bolsonaro said on Tuesday that the reform of the pension system can be tackled piece by piece and that the first issue that he will present to Congress would be the establishment of a minimum age.
“The idea is to start with the (minimum) age, attack the privileges and take it forward,” Bolsonaro said at a press conference in Brasilia.
The president-elect confirmed that the idea is “to present a proposal to amend the Constitution” with the reform of the retirement system, but only one “with the possibility of being approved.”
Current President Michel Temer, whose term will end on Jan. 1, when Bolsonaro will be sworn in, tried unsuccessfully to approve a pension reform that was left paralyzed in Congress for lack of support.
The financial markets, employers organizations and various international organizations consider the approval of this reform essential to rebalance public accounts and help reverse the country’s large fiscal deficit.
The deficit of the pension system grows year after year and “we cannot allow Brazil to reach the situation that Greece reached to do something about it,” Bolsonaro said.
He added that “the tendency to start with age is quite strong” because “it is less difficult” to pass.
Currently, the law allows women to retire with 30 years of contributions and men with 35 without any age limit for it, so there are cases where people aged just 50 years can already receive a pension.