Thursday, May 26, 2005

Britain seeks extra time in Pensions case

Britain has requested extra time to respond to the European Commission on the Spanish pensions issue, official sources have confirmed.

The UK has asked for a fortnight to respond to the complex issues raised by the Commission’s challenge and must now have their formal response in Brussels by June 3.

The Commission has raised the possibility of taking UK to court over payments made to Gibraltar pensioners on a residential basis such as the Household Cost Allowance.

It is regarded as a challenge to Community Care payments and follows long-standing lobbying by the Spanish pensioners association Alpeg.

Pensions were frozen over a decade ago but Spanish pensioners, reportedly some 9,100, are not entitled to any additional payments.

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