Enabling older workers to contribute meaningfully

18 Aug 2019 2 min read

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The Government will do its best to support older workers and the businesses that employ them, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

In his National Day Rally speech, Mr Lee announced that the Tripartite Workgroup on Older Workers has made four key recommendations. Describing the recommendations as sensible, Mr Lee added that the Government has accepted the recommendations in full. They are:

1.       Raise the Retirement Age from 62 today to 65
2.       Raise the Re‐employment Age from 67 to 70
3.       Increase CPF contributions for older workers
4.       Achieve the plan gradually by 2030

Currently, CPF contribution rates for workers begin to taper down after they turn 55. With the recommendation, the Government will start raising the rates for workers above 55 in 2021 gradually.

Come 2022, the Government will raise both the Retirement Age and Re-employment Age for all employees. The Retirement Age will increase from 62 to 63 in 2022, and eventually to 65 by 2030. Meanwhile, the Re‐employment Age will be raised from 67 to 68 in 2022, and eventually to 70 by 2030.

Mr Lee said the Government, as a major employer, will take the lead and raise the Retirement and Re‐employment ages of its employees one year earlier, from 2021 instead of 2022.

As Singaporeans’ live expectancy is currently the longest in the world, Mr Lee explained that it must be a joint effort to enable seniors to continue working productively. He said employers must redesign their training and jobs around the abilities and strengths of older workers. “This way, employers can continue to tap on the skills, knowledge and experience of our older workers,” he added.

Mr Lee also urged employees to adopt the right mindset, saying: “We must be ready to adapt, learn new things, and take on different responsibilities. We cannot just be satisfied doing our old jobs well, because many jobs will change.”

Mr Lee said the Government will help businesses adjust to the new arrangements, and a new support package will be announced in next year’s Budget.

He also dispelled rumours surrounding changes to CPF withdrawal policies. “You can still take out some money at age 55 and you can still start your CPF pay-outs from age 65. All that remains exactly the same! So please ignore any rumours you may hear about this, or messages on WhatsApp, because they are fake news!”