Aug 10, 2016
By Jane Brown
A decision by the governing Liberals in Ottawa to reverse a policy to raise the eligibility age for Old Age Security to 67 was apparently made in spite of arguments from bureaucrats that the move would buck a trend among developed nations.
Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Britain and the United States are among the countries that plan to raise their equivalent pension ages to 67 or higher.
A report in the Globe and Mail says a secret internal policy paper prepared in September during last year’s election makes reference to political promises related to seniors and pensions.
The public servants noted that reversing such a reform would be unusual when compared to moves being made in other nations.
In March, the Trudeau Liberals delivered on a pledge to scrap the Conservative government’s plan to raise the OAS eligibility age to 67 from 65 by 2029.
The Parliamentary Budget Officer released a paper in April estimating that keeping the OAS age at 65 will cost Ottawa an extra $11.2 billion a year in 2029. The PBO also warned that while the federal government’s finances are sustainable, provincial finances are not. This means Ottawa will be under pressure to increase transfer payments in areas such as health care.
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