December 14, 2017 / 8:13 AM / a year ago

Sweden to raise minimum pension age as retirees live longer

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden will raise the minimum age at which workers can take their state pension over the coming years, a move designed to match an increase in average life spans, the major political parties said on Thursday.

Workers can currently choose to take their state pension from the age of 61. This will be raised successively to 64 by 2026.

The current pension system was designed around 20 years ago and Swedes now live around 2.5 years longer on average.

“That is positive but it means that pensions ... have to last a longer time,” the parties said in a statement.

“In order to maintain a good and sustainable pension level, therefore, people need to work longer.”

The reforms will also make it harder for companies to get rid of people who want to continue to work after the mandatory pension age and tighten requirements for funds providers in the pension system after a number of scandals. [L8N1CU16Y]

The deal, which will not affect state finances either positively or negatively, was agreed between the minority coalition of the Social Democrats and Greens, the Moderates - the biggest opposition party - and the Center, Liberal and Christian Democrat parties.

Reporting by Simon Johnson; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg

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