Ministers in Scotland are preparing to back down on public sector pension reform in the face of the threat of more strike action by local authority staff, according to newspaper reports.
The Scottish Executive had previously insisted there could be no movement on plans to raise the age at which hundreds of thousands of public sector workers could retire without any financial penalty, from 60 to 65.
But just a day after 200,000 local government workers took nationwide industrial action over the issue, Tom McCabe, the finance minister, has signalled a change of heart.
McCabe revealed that he was considering seeking an exemption from the European age discrimination law which ministers claim has forced them to end the so-called “Rule of 85” retirement provision.
He said the executive was considering seeking a “derogation” – the European technical term for an exemption – from the EU directive, reports The Scotsman.
Ministers, employers and union leaders in England are holding further talks.