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No plans for raising retirement age still further

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The government has insisted that there is no need to up the state pension retirement age beyond the increase to 68 planned for 2044.

Angela Eagle, the Pensions Minister, made the assertion in response to claims by David Norgrove, the Pensions’ Regulator, that greater average life expectancy could lead to a decision to lift the state retirement threshold higher still.

Under government plans, the current pensionable age of 60 for women and 65 for men will rise for both genders to 66 in 2024, to 67 in 2034 and to 68 in 2044.

But in a BBC interview, Mr Norgrove said that a combination of increasing longevity and a reluctance to save would pressurise the upper limit of 68.

He commented: “People are going to have to work longer, partly because we’re not going, as a nation, to save as much for retirement as we did in the past. The government’s recent legislation is increasing the state retirement age progressively to 68. I think it will end up higher than that.”

However, Ms Eagle countered by saying that, according to government calculations, there is no need to raise the threshold any further.

The Minister said: “We believe that we’ve covered the predictions of increased life expectancy adequately in the legislation and unless these statistics change we’ll have periodic reviews, but it won’t happen for another generation.

“I think it’s important that people can predict accurately when the retirement age is if we’re trying to persuade them to save into pensions, and that’s what we’re trying to do. So there is certainty there.”