Retirement Age 'Must Be Raised to 70'

By Dolan, Andy | Daily Mail (London), March 8, 2002 | Go to article overview
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Retirement Age 'Must Be Raised to 70'


Dolan, Andy, Daily Mail (London)


Byline: ANDY DOLAN

THE man leading the Government's pensions review will recommend that the state retirement age is lifted to 70, it emerged last night.

Alan Pickering, former chairman of the National Association of Pension Funds, believes that longer life expectancy has made the official retirement age of 65 unworkable.

He says the higher age should be phased in by 2030 to safeguard the retirement of millions of workers.

Mr Pickering, 53, told The Times: 'People need to appreciate that you can't work from 25 to 55 and then live the life of Riley to 95.

'You just can't create enough wealth in 30 years of work to support 40 years of retirement.

'It's a nonsense to have a state pension age now which is lower than that which David Lloyd George introduced in 1908. He fixed an age of 70.' Mr Pickering's conclusions will be presented to ministers in the summer.

The Centre-Left think-tank the Institute for Public Policy Research recently called for the state retirement age to be lifted to 67, saying Government pension policy is too complex and makes saving for old age difficult.

It called on the Government to abolish means testing, significantly increase the basic state pension and restore the earnings link.

Alistair Darling, the Work and Pensions Secretary who commissioned Mr Pickering's review, called the institute's proposals 'simplistic and misguided'.

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