Shock as state pension age to rise to 68 by 2037 - seven years sooner than planned
Millions of workers will have to wait longer before they retire after the Government announced it was increasing the pension age more quickly than previously planned.
In a surprise announcement, Work and Pensions Secretary David Gauke said it would go up from 67 to 68 from 2037 instead of 2044.
Mr Gauke told MPs his party’s approach was “responsible and fair” and said not making the move now would mean an “extremely unfair burden” on future generations.
The announcement today follows a review led by the former head of the CBI, Sir John Cridland, which recommended phasing in the change over two years from 2037.
Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Debbie Abrahams called the move an "an astonishing continuation of austerity" which will see 34 million people working longer than under Labour’s plans to cap the state pension age at 66.
She pointed to recent evidence from the Institute of Health Equity showing that rises in life expectancy have levelled off since the Tories came to power in 2010.
“The latest research shows that working people in some places will now fall ill ten years before receiving their state pension under the Tories' new plan - and just days ago, evidence emerged showing that increases in life expectancy are stalling,” she said.
“Indeed, most pensioners will now face what has been described as a “toxic cocktail” of ill health throughout their whole retirement.
“We cannot allow this Government to push people to work longer and longer to pay for its failed austerity agenda.bour’s plans.
But Mr Gauke hit back, claiming that Labour’s plans would add tens of billions of pounds to the national debt over the next few decades.
“When the evidence in front of us shows that life expectancy will continue to increase at a little over one year every eight years that pass, fixing the state pension age at 66…demonstrates a complete failure to appreciate the situation in front of us.”
“Compared to the timetable set out by this Government it will add £250bn to national debt.
“Let’s put that in context, that’s almost twice as much as was dispersed into the financial sector following the financial crisis. Spending in 2040 under their plans would be £20bn higher than under the plans we are setting out.
“That is almost twice the Home Office budget, where on earth is this money coming from?”
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