Six out of Sweden’s eight parliamentary parties are now in agreement that the national age of retirement is to be raised from 61 to 64 years. This comes against the backdrop of a recent report from the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SKL).
The report notes that due to Sweden’s enormous population growth, there are insufficient revenues to meet the demand for welfare.
“Beginning 2018 we expect that the need for welfare will grow considerably more rapidly than tax revenues,” SKL chief economist Annika Wallenskog said, according to Swedish financial paper Dina Pengar.
The paper goes on to report that the high population growth is due to the massive influx of migrants last year, as well as a historically high fertility rate. These factors are putting considerable pressure on the local authorities and regions.
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SVT, the Swedish national broadcaster reported that of the eight parties in parliament, six had agreed on the need to incrementally raise the retirement age from today’s 61 to 64 by 2026.
The Social Democrat-led coalition government is also keen on raising welfare benefits. Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson, a Social Democrat, suggests that welfare should remain the priority, and argues for a change of attitude when it comes to the elderly remaining active in the labor market.
“Those who are lively at an advanced age should have the possibility to work longer,” the Finance Minister told Dina Pengar.
Of course, not all Swedes are happy about the news that they may need to work longer before being allowed to retire.
“’We throw out the crooks from the system’ – Thought at first it was the fake asylum seekers she meant, but apparently not.”
“Sweden’s Women’s Lobby is critical to raised retirement age because it will affect women more than men. The first thing that needs to be ensured is that everyone has the opportunity to work full time throughout their professional lives.”
“Was this the Christmas present for the Swedish people from you with the internal pay review and creamy pensions? Are you working until 70?”