Kuwait’s National Assembly on Tuesday overwhelmingly passed a controversial early retirement law allowing citizens to retire as early as age 45.
A total of 40 MPs voted in favour of the law and 16 voted against it following amendments made by the government, according to Kuwait Times.
However, several MPs said their approval depended on changes to several provisions before a second and final round of voting is held.
Under the law, Kuwaiti citizens will be able to retire five years earlier than the current official retirement age of 55 for men and 50 for women if they accept a 2 per cent reduction to their pension each year.
The government initially wanted the cut to be 5 per cent but agreed to pay the 3 per cent difference to the social security agency.
The National Assembly approved the original law in its previous term but the legislation was rejected by the government, which wanted amendments.
Kuwait’s finance minister said the law would not apply to thousands of Kuwaitis that had already retired, according to the publication.
Nayef Al-Hajraf said the pension reduction was designed to dissuade experienced citizens from seeking early retirement.
However, MP Salah Khorshed indicated 7,600 government employees would be able to retire without a pension cut.