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Cyprus and Malta tipped to attract more British retirees

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A growing number of retirees from the UK may be about to emigrate and set up home in places such as Malta and Cyprus, experts have suggested.

According to financial advisory organisation the deVere Group, many British people are looking to safeguard their retirement income from the government's "ongoing raids" on the money they have put away over the years.

Therefore, it believes measures outlined in chancellor George Osborne's recent Budget are likely to be so unpopular with older Britons that it may prompt some of them to pack their bags and relocate to another country.

Speaking in the House of Commons last week, Mr Osborne confirmed that from April next year, the age-related allowance for people who turn 65 will be abolished.

While the chancellor has insisted it represents a "major simplification" of the tax system that means "no pensioner will lose in cash terms", the deVere Group believes the removal of this benefit will put many people off having a pension in the UK.

Nigel Green, chief executive of the firm, commented: "We fully expect English-speaking EU countries such as Cyprus and Malta to be increasingly popular destinations for those who want to enjoy their retirement in the sun and safeguard the money they've been putting aside all their lives."

He added that the number of people from the UK who look to "retire to countries in which they'll be taxed less" could reach record levels in the near future. As a result, many more people may need to arrange an international money transfer so they can move their assets outside the UK.

While the government's decision has been slammed by some as a granny tax and a political own goal, the move has been defended by others. The Institute for Public Policy Research, for instance, has argued it is a positive step as it is younger people who have borne the brunt of efforts to cut Britain's budget deficit thus far.

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