A report from the Resolution Foundation identifies the potential to raise employment among 50-64 year olds by around 920,000 over this parliament, and for employment among 65-69 year olds to increase by 240,000.
The estimates are based on bringing employment in under-performing areas of the UK close to the levels seen in high performing areas such as the South East and East of England. Merseyside (58 per cent), Wales, Northern Ireland and inner London (all 63 per cent) currently have the lowest employment rates for 50-64 year olds.
The Foundation argues that traditional focuses on those out of work need to be updated for the 21st Century. Helping older people to remain in work is the most effective way to raise employment among older workers. It says that too many workers are forced to leave the labour market prematurely when they develop ill-health or take on new caring responsibilities, and struggle to return to work.