Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced on Thursday the Russian state pension age would be boosted from 60 to 65 for men by 2028 and 55 to 63 for women by 2034.
Mr Medvedev said the measures were “unavoidable and long overdue”, and were designed to kick-start a rise in living standards and economic development.
But the new policy would mean the country’s retirement age for men would only be a year lower than the World Health Organisation’s estimated life expectancy for a Russian man aged 66.
The government have been criticised by Russia citizens for trying to hide the announcement while people were distracted with the 2018 World Cup which is being held in Vladimir Putin’s superstate.
One Russian tweeted: “While everyone was busy with the opening of the World Cup 2018, Medvedev announced the pension age in Russia should be increased.”
In reference to data from the World Bank he added: “I remind you: 43 percent of males in Russia will not live until their retirement age,”
World Bank has estimated a Russian male’s life expectancy at 66, while the CIA’s World Factbook estimated it at 65.
Russia women, on the other hand, can expect to live to around 77.
Dmitry Peskov, a press secretary for Russian President Vladimir Putin said: “In the Russian Federation, there have been changes both in terms of demography and from the point of view of the level of economic development, changes in the international state of affairs.
“No country exists in a vacuum.”
Mr Peskov continued to say changes in this area have not been made in “a fairly long period and during this period changes in any country are possible.”
Another Russian citizen tweeted: ”Why do you need a pension if you won’t live to see it?”
The Russian Confederation of Labour (KTR) said official statistics showed the average life expectancy of men was less than 65 in more than 60 different regions of Russia.
The KTR estimated around 40 percent of men and 20 percent of women may not live long enough to claim their pensions under the new rules.
KTR said in a statement: “The intention to raise the retirement age is not based on available official statistics and does not meet the goals set by the president of the Russian Federation to the government.
“KTR does not support such decisions and declares its intention to launch a broad public campaign against their implementation.”
Russia’s Federal Statistic Service projected men’s life expectancy would reach 74 by 2034.
It was reported last year the Russian government wants to raise the national average life expectancy to 76 by 2025.