Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday personally delivered the draft of a sweeping pension reform proposal to Congress. The proposal, in the form of a constitutional amendment, requires approval by three-fifths of each house of Congress. Chamber of Deputies Speaker Rodrigo Maia promised to expedite consideration, saying the proposal will be submitted immediately to the Committee on Constitutional Affairs and then to a special committee. The proposal establishes a minimum retirement age of 65 for men and 62 for women. It requires a minimum of 20 years of contributions to be eligible for a pension. It would also raise contribution levels for public employees and, over the long term, establish a system of individual retirement accounts. According to the Economy Ministry, the proposed reform would reduce government pension costs by R$1.165 trillion over four years. Savings in the first four years would amount to R$189 billion. The reform is designed to gradually eliminate deep annual deficits in the government-run pension system. The pension deficit in 2018 was R$286 billion and is expected to rise to R$308 billion this year.
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