Moldovan MPs approve IMF-backed retirement age increase

CHISINAU (Reuters) - Moldovan MPs on Monday approved raising the retirement age to 63 years from the current level of 57 for women and 62 for men, a reform that is part of a three-year-old assistance program agreed with the International Monetary Fund. The retirement age will be lifted gradually by a few months every year until coming fully into effect in 2028. Life expectancy in the ex-Soviet country -- Europe's poorest -- is 67.5 years for men and 75.5 years for women. In a country with a population of 3.5 million, of which 1 million are abroad, there are more than 700,000 pensioners. (Reporting by Alexander Tanas; editing by Alexei Kalmykov and Matthias Williams)