While delivering the National Day Rally speech on Sunday (18 August), Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that by 2030, senior Singaporeans who wish to pursue working on the same employment terms will be guaranteed to do so until the age of 65, instead of 62 now.
On top of that, the Central Provident Fund (CPF) contribution rates will also be increased over the next 10 years for employees from the age 55 to 70, in order to allow them to build up more retirement savings.
He added that the statutory retirement age will gradually be raised to 63 in 2022, and eventually to 65 by 2030. In addition, the re-employment age will also go up from 67 now to 68 in 2022 and soon to 70 by 2030.
If that is not all, employees cannot be laid off due to their age before they reach the retirement age. Employers must also allow eligible staff work up to the re-employment age with the flexibility to adjust the contract terms.
PM Lee also noted that these changes were suggested by a tripartite workgroup and fully agreed by the Government, as it “will support older workers to continue working longer and be more financially independent”.
The higher retirement age in 2022 will be applicable to those born on or after 1 July 1960, and the higher re-employment age will apply to individuals born on or after 1 July 1955.
All these are made since Singapore’s life expectancy at birth has increased to the longest in the world at nearly 85 years. This means that close to half of Singaporeans are expected to live longer than that, said PM Lee.
“We are healthy for longer, we live longer, but we don’t want to spend more years idle in retirement. We want to stay active, engaged, feel a sense of worth and purpose..Also, many of us want to build up bigger nest eggs for when we eventually retire,” he explained.
Besides that, he also highlighted that there are no changes when it comes to CPF withdrawal policies or ages. This means that CPF members are still allowed to withdraw a certain amount of money at the age of 55 and begin their monthly payouts from the age of 65.
“If you hear anybody tell you something different, please ignore him or her. And if it comes to you on WhatsApp from a friend, please delete it and tell your friend. Don’t share it with more friends and confuse people, because that will be fake news. POFMA will catch you,” he said, referring to the controversial Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act which was passed in June.
He also said that employers will receive assistance to adjust to these new arrangements via a support package that Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat will reveal in 2020’s Budget.
Speaking of CPF contribution rates, PM Lee explained that they are now being tapered down from 37% after employees turn 55. He added that the rates for those aged 55 to 70 will be slowly increased from 2021 until those aged 60 and below enjoy the full CPF rates. The rates will begin to taper down after 60 and even out after 70.
The entire process will approximately take about 10 years, but it will still rely on “economic conditions”, said PM Lee.
He also explained that the higher ages and CPF rates are recommendations raised by the Tripartite Workgroup on Older Workers, which was created last year by the Manpower Ministry and comprises of government, employer and union representatives.
After meeting the workgroup members in July, he found out that older workers wanted to be guaranteed of continued employment for longer, while employers were concerned about business costs and the uncertain economic outlook, and wanted more flexibility.
Thankfully, PM Lee said the workgroup finally reached consensus. He also said that the Government will lead as the main employer to increase the retirement and re-employment ages in the Public Service in 2021, a year ahead of schedule.
He also said he encourages private sector companies to do the same as “enabling seniors to continue working productively takes a joint effort by employers and employees”.
He stressed that employers need to redesign their training, careers and jobs to suit the abilities and strengths of older workers, while workers must learn to adapt, learn new things and accept different responsibilities.
After reading what PM Lee had to say about extending the retirement age, many netizens applauded the move in ST’s Facebook page as they see it as good news. This is because it will help those who wish to work longer or those who don’t have any savings to survive in Singapore.
 
However, others opined that it’s unfair to make seniors to work for survival at such an old age, with some questioning why is CPF payouts not distributed earlier so these individuals will have a choice not to work. Others said it’s sad to see older Singaporeans work at hawker centres and get scolding from their bosses because they’re slow, when they should actually be relaxing during their final years.

A group of them also pointed out that it’s actually quite hard for seniors to find a job, so it’s no point for the Government to increase the retirement age. They added that employers who would actually  want to hire them are only “security and cleaners company”,and they cannot find “jobs in their relevant industries”. Goh Guan Sam also questioned the need to raise CPF contribution if the wage does not increase. This is because “increase contribution means less take home wage”, which is obviously not helpful for the older individuals.


Subscribe
Notify of
1 Comment
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
You May Also Like

Filmmaker shares his short film inspired by Sin Ming fowl culling incident online

When Sin Ming resident filmmaker Mr Jun Chong couldn’t secure a location…

冠毒疫情薪金补贴 首周接约两万申请

社会及家庭发展部长李智陞指出,冠状病毒疫情薪金补贴自5月1日开放后的首个星期,已经接获了约两万分申请,当局也已展开处理程序。 他于昨日(5月11日),在脸书帖文做出以上公布。政府自本月起至9月30日,开放两种协助受疫情影响,导致失业、被迫休无薪假或月薪收入至少减少30巴仙的津贴申请。申请者可透过政府电子密码(SingPass),上网到go.gov.sg/CSG提出申请。 政府为了协助受到疫情影响员工,推出冠毒疫情薪金补贴(COVID-19 Support Grant)。若员工因疫情失业,可申请每月800元补贴,为期三个月。 至于因疫情收入减少至少三成的人士,符合条件申请者可获得三个月的补贴,每月补贴金额多达500元。 此外,自雇人士无需申请冠毒疫情薪金补贴,可透过自雇人士收入补贴计划(Self-employed Persons Income Relief Scheme)申请援助。 不在以上群体的国民,若面对财务困境也可直接求助社会服务中心。

Elderly female e-cyclist with 3 part-time jobs killed in accident along Cantonment Road

Last Sunday (5 Jan) early morning, a car accident involving two cars…

Activists Commemorate the 9th World Day Against the Death Penalty

Media Release 10 October 2011 For Immediate Release Singapore:  On Sunday, 9…