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Few Swedes ready to work until they're 75: poll

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Few Swedes ready to work until they're 75: poll
A file image of a worker at a Volvo Cars assembly plant
08:25 CET+01:00
An overwhelming majority of Swedes disagree with Swedish prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's suggestion that workers should be ready to stay on the job until they are 75, a new poll shows.

In a survey carried out by the Novus polling firm for Sweden's TV4, 73 percent answered no when asked if they thought Sweden's retirement age should be raised to 75.

Twenty percent of those polled supported the idea, while 7 percent were uncertain.

“It's too long. If someone's been working since they were 18, then it's enough to work until they're 65,” worker Stefan Nyman told TV4 when asked if he could imagine to work until he was 75.

The survey comes following comments by Reinfeldt, published on Tuesday in the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper, in which the prime minister said Sweden's workers shouldn't expect to be able to retire at 65.

“The pensions scheme isn't based on magic. It is a welfare ambition based on large-scale re-distribution and citizens' own work. If people think that we can live longer and shorten our work life, then pensions will get lower,” he told DN.

Reinfeldt went on to say that Swedes may have to stretch their working life to 75 years of age if they want to maintain the same standard of living as while working.

Sweden has a flexible retirement age, where workers can begin drawing on their pension at 61 or keep working until 67. Of Swedes over 65 years old, 7.8 percent were employed in 2010, according to Statistics Sweden.

On Tuesday union representatives slammed the proposal, arguing that it was not feasible for workers to stay on the job until the age of 75.

According to the Novus/TV4 poll, women are more negative (81 percent) toward working until 75 than men (65 percent).

In addition, 86 percent of blue collar workers were opposed to the idea, compared with 72 percent of white collar workers.

Only 7 percent of those polled thought Sweden's retirement age should be raised to 75 or above, while 43 percent thought 70 was an appropriate retirement age and 44 percent supported a retirement age of 67.

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