EUROPEAN PAPERS ON THE NEW WELFARE

Employment of Older Workers in the Netherlands: Recent Reforms

1. Introduction

Recent Dutch experience of employment for older workers differs significantly from that of other continental countries like France and Germany. In a nutshell, over the last 7 or 8 years, the Netherlands have been able to start reversing the early retirement trend and improving employment at end of career. As a result, the employment rate of 55-64-year-old Dutch workers increased from 30% in 1995 to 42% in 2002 (for men from 41% to 55% and for women from 18% to 29%), and the average age of exit from the labour force rose from around 60 years in 1995 to 62 years in 2002 (cf. EUROSTAT, 2004).
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