Economic growth adversely affected by 'shrinking workforce', committee warns

24 Apr 2023

A report published by the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee has warned that the UK's shrinking workforce is restricting economic growth.

The report suggested that labour shortages are being 'exacerbated' by an 'exodus' of over-50s from the labour market during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A poll commissioned by the Committee revealed that whilst many workers took early retirement, some individuals would consider returning to work if flexible roles with adequate protections allowed them to continue a semi-retirement.

Darren Jones, Chairman of the BEIS Committee, said: 'Our shrinking and ageing UK labour market and the lack of political leadership on this issue is holding back economic growth.

'Rethinking the legal framework and protections around new types of more flexible working through an Employment Bill would open up work opportunities to many people who want to be economically active but currently aren't. We won't be able to move the dial on economic growth in our country until we invest in, support and make the most of the potential of every worker across the UK.'