By Jonathan McCambridge, PA
The Government has published a report which proposes raising the state pension age to 68 by 2039.
The Report of the Commission on Pensions develops options for ministers to consider in order to address the sustainability of the state pension system and the Social Insurance Fund (SIF).
Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys submitted the report to the cabinet on Thursday.
It will now be sent to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Social Protection to seek its views on the recommendations.
The report recommends increasing the state pension age from 2028 by three months every year until reaching 67 in 2031.
It would increase again by three months every two years from 2033 onwards.
This would see the pension age set at 68 years from 2039.
Ms Humphreys said: “The state pension is valued by all of society and it is the bedrock of the pension system in Ireland. It is extremely effective at preventing pensioners from falling into poverty and we want to make sure that this stays the case into the future.
“There are clear challenges in ensuring the sustainability of the state pension for future generations. This has been known for years and confirmed in the Report of the Commission on Pensions.”
Ms Humphreys said: “I would like to thank the chair, Josephine Feehily, and all of the commission members for producing a report that sets out evidence-based options and recommendations for the government to consider.
“This Government will now carefully consider the report’s recommendations and findings.”
Chair of the Pensions Commission Ms Feehily said: “Irish people are living longer and staying well and healthy for longer which is really good news.
“It presents great opportunities but also a big challenge for all of us: how to make sure that the state pension continues to prevent poverty when there are many more people drawing it for many more years.
“The commission considers that it would be a strategic risk not to plan and provide for this known issue.
“The commission has made several recommendations in this report to shore up the fiscal sustainability of the state pension system based on the values of social solidarity.”