Mr van Zwol of the VNV Dutch airline pilots' association (Flight International, 5-11 November) refers to the "justice of the [retirement] situation in the Netherlands". However, the reason that this issue is raised, like the age 60 challenge in the USA, is because there is no justice in the present system. To have a group which has or expects to have the financial resources to consider early retirement, then force its opinion on a minority who don't have that status, is virtually a definition of injustice.Labour agreements are modified at regular intervals. There is no law that says the retirement age in that same labour agreement is "untouchable". It is as negotiable as any other element.

Mr van Zwol's arguments are as flawed as the statement about "several court cases" upholding the age 56 retirement threshold. Those cases are still in progress with appeals, and higher courts, including the European Court of Justice, are still an option.

His concluding paragraph basically states: "If you do have to work past 56, then do it somewhere else". If that is not a prime example of arrogance and greed, I don't know what is.

D Lucas Oegstgeest, The Netherlands

Source: Flight International