The Russian State Duma, or lower parliament house, passed a softened version of a bill on raising the retirement age Wednesday (September 26) in the second and most important reading.

Russian State Duma's plenary session (Photo: Vladimir Fedorenko/Sputnik)


During the vote, 326 supported the bill, while 59 opposed it and one abstained.

The bill proposed by the Russian government and passed by the State Duma in the first reading on July 19 aimed to gradually extend the retirement age to 65 from 60 for men and to 63 from 55 for women starting in 2019.

The bill triggered protests throughout the country and President Vladimir Putin on Aug. 29 proposed several amendments to cushion the effect of the reform.

His proposals included lowering the retirement age for women to 60 years but keeping that for men at 65.

The proposals also included the possibility for mothers of multiple children to retire before the age of 60, and citizens, who under the current legislation will retire in the next two years, could get their pension six months before the new retirement age.

After being passed in the second reading, the bill cannot be amended. Now the document awaits a third or final reading in the State Duma and then it has to be approved by the upper house before being signed into law by Putin.

Russia faces a gradual decline in its native population, which could lead to a labor shortage.

In addition to raising the retirement age, the Russian government has rolled out measures to encourage births.


                   Source: NDO

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