Saturday, 30 September 2023

We are shifting our daily news to Gutzy.Asia Support us there!

CPF lump sum withdrawal "will bring grief" to workers: unionists

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s remarks about letting Central Provident Fund (CPF) members withdraw part of their savings in a lump sum have raised worries among unionists.
At a dialogue with Mr Lee on Thursday, the unionists, according to the Straits Times, said this “will bring grief” to the very same group of people which should be protected – the low-wage earners – according to local news reports of the dialogue.
Mr Lee had made the proposal in his National Day Rally speech earlier in August.
“I think we should allow people the option to take out part of their CPF savings in a lump sum if they need to but subject to some limits,” Mr Lee said then. “The amount which you can take out cannot be excessive.”
He suggested that members could perhaps withdraw “up to 20 per cent of the total that you have and it should only be during retirement, 65 and beyond.”
Mr Lee, however, cautioned that there are downsides to this, and acknowledged what the unionists are now saying.
“We provide this flexibility but members must understand clearly the trade-offs because if you take out the lump sum, that means you will have less left in the CPF and your monthly payments will also be less,” he said. “So, that is a second thing we should do, make the CPF more flexible, and have the possibility of a controlled lump sum withdrawal in retirement.”
BTMr Benjamin Tang, president of the Port Officers’ Union and member of NTUC central executive committee, who was at Thursday dialogue, told the media after the event, “The unions felt that basically, CPF should be something that is used for the retirement needs of workers.” He added, “By allowing (a lump-sum) to be withdrawn from the Minimum Sum, it will mean less for living expenses later on.”
According to Mr Tang, the prime minister gave assurance that there will be safeguards and that the CPF will “remain an institution that takes care of the retirement needs of workers.” (TODAY)
The dialogue was attended by some 550 unionists and the Minister of Manpower, Tan Chuan Jin, who was also at another dialogue with 140 people to discuss Mr Lee’s National Day Rally speech.
Mr Tan said that details of the changes to the CPF are expected to be announced in two weeks.
He added that issues being considered by the review panel included the degree of flexibility of withdrawals, addressing the uncertainty which plagues the CPF Minimum Sum, and how best to enhance support for the elderly.
On the Minimum Sum, which has caused much unhappiness among members because of its annual increases, Mr Tan said “the variable is inflation.”
“So if we perhaps settle it at 2 per cent every year, then I can actually give for sure. So we’re actually looking at it, whether we can just take that uncertainty out of the whole equation.”
He said that “if inflation turns out to be very erratic, then we will reset it again.”
“We are going to look at how we can be clearer,” he explained. “Basically it’s the uncertainty; the more certainty we have, the less anxiety… That’s something we are quite tempted to do but we will go through the review panel to see if it is something we want.”
Mr Lee had said in his speech that the Minimum Sum, which was raised on 1 July from S$148,000 to S$155,000, will be further increased to S$161,000 next year.
He said that he did not see the need for any more major increases in the MS beyond this, but added that “we will still need to adjust the MS from time to time.”

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Latest posts

Election surprises and certainties: Dissecting Tharman’s presidential win

In the 2023 Presidential Election, Mr. Tharman Shanmugaratnam secured a stunning 70.4% landslide victory, surprising many, including himself. Despite expectations that TKL would win the opposition votes, voters from both camps showed a preference for Tharman's charisma and perceived competency. As Singapore reflects on the outcome, questions arise about the election's fairness and the real implications of Tharman's dominant win.

Volunteer as a Polling and Counting Agent for Singapore’s 2023 Presidential Election

For the upcoming Singapore Presidential Election on 1st September, members of the civil society have spearheaded an initiative to strengthen our democratic fabric. We invite committed individuals to join us as Polling and Counting Agents, standing together for a transparent, fair, and just election. This vote counting exercise, organized by members of civil society, is not specifically in support of Mr Tan Kin Lian, a candidate in the upcoming Presidential Election. It's an exercise in active citizenry. Nonetheless, Mr Tan endorses this initiative, which hinges on his candidacy, championing transparency, and has given permission for the results to be shared publicly.

Reflections from the Centenary: The Legacy of LKY and Singapore’s Future

Gilbert Goh reflects on the LKY centenary event: an inspiring showcase of a leader's global legacy juxtaposed against current challenges, urging Singapore to continue its path of progress.

Lim Tean advocates for Tan Kin Lian: A visionary leader for Singapore’s Presidency

In his speech at Mr Tan Kin Lian's launch of his presidential bid, Mr Lim Tean passionately championed the need for a truly Independent President. Highlighting Mr Tan Kin Lian's unique credentials and genuine concern for the wellbeing of Singaporeans, the Peoples Voice leader emphasized the pressing challenges of rising living costs and job insecurities faced by the public. Mr Lim depicted Mr Tan Kin Lian as a beacon of hope for the nation, advocating for a leader who genuinely understands and represents the people’s aspirations.

Tan Jee Say endorses Tan Kin Lian for President: A courageous, genuine, and humble...

In advocating for a truly representative leader, Tan Jee Say underscored Tan Kin Lian's humility, courage, and genuine dedication. Highlighting the pressing need for restored public trust and effective independence, Tan Jee Say emphasized that Tan Kin Lian, as the 'People's President', would bring back hope to Singaporeans and champion true democracy

Tan Kin Lian’s pledge: Rekindling unity and charting a vigorous future for Singapore

In the press conference to announce his bid for the Singapore presidency, Tan Kin Lian emphasizes safeguarding Singapore's reserves and strengthening public service integrity. Drawing on his 30-year leadership at NTUC Income, he envisions a future with affordable living, accessible housing, and job stability, pledging collaboration with the government for a united nation.

Strengthening Singapore’s political foundations: A call to action by Leong Mun Wai on Singapore’s...

Leong Mun Wai urges Singaporeans to strengthen political checks and balances, emphasizing, 'The best is yet to be for Singapore if we dare to make the right decision in upcoming elections.

Trending posts