Could robots reduce the state pension age? This workers union thinks artificial intelligence will help us retire early

Lynsey Barber
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The state pension age should reflect productivity gains (Source: Getty)

Fancy retiring early than expected? The nation could get a helping hand to kick back and relax ahead of time thanks to robots and artificial intelligence.

There may be fears around the technology taking jobs, but in fact, one of the benefits could be a reduction in the state pension age, which has steadily risen over the years and will reach 68 by 2037.

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The productivity gains from automation should be shared and the planned rise in the age of retirement halted, the TUC union has said.

"With the UK failing to make productivity gains in the last decade, we need to make the most of the economic opportunities that new technologies are offering," said general secretary Frances O'Grady.

"Robots and AI could let us produce more for less, boosting national prosperity. But we need a debate about who benefits from this wealth, and how workers get a fair share."

In a new report published by the union, it also called for greater workplace training as jobs change, particularly those at mid-career level.

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"We should look on the changes ahead as an opportunity to improve the lives of working people and their families. The government could use the revenue generated to reverse policies to raise the state pension age. And businesses could use productivity gains to improve the pay and conditions of workers."

She added: “Robots are not just terminators. Some of today’s jobs will not survive, but new jobs will be created. We must make sure that tomorrow’s jobs are no worse than today’s. They must provide fulfilling work, with good pay and conditions. And there must be funding to train people for new work if their job is made obsolete.”

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