Think tank proposes increasing SPA to 75

The think tank fronted by former Conservative leader Iain Duncan-Smith, The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ), has proposed raising the state pension age (SPA) to 75 by 2035.

In its latest publication, Ageing confidently – Supporting an ageing workforce, the think tank suggested first increasing the SPA to 70 by 2028 before the increase to 75.

It said that the changes would “ensure that the old age dependency ratio remains in the sustainable range of 20 to 25 over the next 20 years”.

The Department for Work and Pensions did not rule out implementing the recommendations.

Currently, the SPA is due to rise to 67 between 2026 and 2028 then up to 68 between 2044 and 2046.

The report said that although the proposed increase to 75 “might seem contrary to a long-standing compassionate attitude” to older people that have been working for decades, the CSJ “does not believe it should be”.

It continued: “Working longer has the potential to improve health and wellbeing, increase retirement savings and ensure the full functioning of public services for all.

“The state pension is an important benefit that provides security to those who have retired.

“If we expect this benefit to continue along with other public services, a sustainable SPA must be introduced.”

The CSJ's publication also questioned whether the SPA should even exist.

It noted that when the first state pension schemes were introduced over 100 years ago, the age thresholds were between 65-70 years old when life expectancy was around 50 years.

Life expectancy is now at 80 years and the SPA is currently 65, which the CSJ says revealed a “disconnect between contemporary life expectancies and the state pension age”.

“This raises the question of whether the state pension age is fit for the 21st century,” it said.

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