Gov't, business groups discuss raising retirement age to 65

The government and business groups this week began discussions on whether the mandatory retirement age should be raised to 65 from the current 60.

The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare is calling for companies to rehire retirees who would like to keep working once they turn 60. In line with this proposal, the pension eligibility age would also be raised to 65, the Nikkei reported.

However, Hiromasa Yonekura, chairman of the Federation of Economic Organizations (Keidanren), said that health problems begin to weigh on people as they grow older. “Rather than mandating a retirement age, it should be left up to individuals and the companies they work for,” he was quoted as saying.

He also said that if older employees are kept on at companies, that would have a negative impact on the number of graduates able to find jobs.

Meanwhile, Nobuaki Koga, the head of the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (Rengo), offered a different view, Sankei Shimbun reported. “Keeping the mandatory age as is may result in some elderly being unable to pay for basic needs. Anyone that wants to work until 65 should have that option,” he said.

The labor ministry said it hopes to have a bill on a revision to the labor law ready to be submitted to the Diet next year.

TOKYO

  • 3

    ExportExpert

    65 is realistic and will reduce the burden on penison payments too.

    Hurry up and do it, 65 is not too old to retire.

  • 0

    MaboDofuIsSpicy

    “Rather than mandating a retirement age, it should be left up to individuals and the companies they work for,”

    Finally someone thinking in this country.

    But only the individual, not the company making the decision.

  • 0

    condor

    With the speed decisions are made in this country they should already start thinking about raising it to 70. What 'graduates' anyway? By 2050 there will be hardly any.

  • 0

    soldave

    But the retirement age doesn't count for governmental officials, I'm taking it? Implement it, enforce it and get people governor Ishihara in day service where he belongs.

  • 0

    cactusJack

    I think if you raise it to 65, you have also got to include programs that help folks get off cigarettes, booze, and lead a path to a healthier lifestyle.

  • 2

    globalwatcher

    mandatory retirement age should be raised to 65 from the current 60.

    There are many solid well skilled senior executives in Japan who are forced to get out due to age issue.
    Here in US, there is no mandatory retirement age. I used report to my boss who was 75 yrs. old very skilled experienced director in my organizaton. He worked harder than anyone else I have known in my life. This is an "AGE DISCRIMINATION" against seniors, and this rule should be completely abolished. Hope Japan is civilized than this. Shame.

  • 1

    naruhodo1

    What about the many who made a mistake and are stuck in their job for life and would love to be able to retire early at 55 or 60? Its wrong to increase the age like thar. There should be more flexibility.

  • 2

    cubic

    This is going to be a bit of a nightmare for big Japanese companies. Because it is practically impossible to fire even the most incompetent employees in Japan, raising the retirement age means these companies are going to have to pay them for even longer.

  • 0

    tmarie

    Raise it. It means I'll have to work longer but more than happy to if it means I'll get the pension I'm paying for - and keeps me out of trouble when I'm older!

  • 0

    cleo

    The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare is calling for companies to rehire retirees who would like to keep working once they turn 60.

    'Rehiring' means keeping people on in the same job but on a yearly or six-monthly contract and a drastically reduced salary. Re-hirees are also likely to be given menial work way below their level of competence and with lousy working conditions.

    In line with this proposal, the pension eligibility age would also be raised to 60

    Since it's now 65, shouldn't that be lowered to 60?

  • 1

    Ranger_Miffy2

    Mandatory retirement ages should be abolished immediately. They are a bane. Kicking out fully excellent people simply due to age. How reactionary. One of the worst things here, and so unfair. Let people retire after a certain age when they want to.

  • 1

    Ranger_Miffy2

    Cubic: it would also mean that companies could hold onto fully contributing older employees, too. Ever think of that? There's probably more of them than the nitters.

  • 0

    Fadamor

    The mandatory retirement age should only apply to certain professions. Some professions in the transportation sector (airline pilots, bus drivers, train operators) should have mandatory retirement ages for safety reasons. Other professions should be a case-by-case decision between the employer and the employee.

  • 0

    globalwatcher

    I agreed, Fadamor. I should have made it more clear on this topic.

  • 0

    Tunde-Krisztina Kiss

    about the retierenment age the moost important matter that it should be considerated would be the mental health,ability of the person in talk.There should be settled a limit for the retiernment,a medical healthcheck and than the decision of the person if it is considerated that is workable to also hawe the ocasion and opportunity to decide weather it would like to remain workacktive or it would like to resign when the agelimit it is achived.But the final decision in case should be newer mutilated and it should alwayes be the last word of the retierd one if it is stil considerated as a person who is medically work able.

  • 0

    Shumatsu_Samurai

    These are very necessary steps. Given that workers will be in short supply in the future, it will be very necessary to have people working longer. The country can't also support so many people living in retirement for so long - Japanese remain some of the longest lived people in the world (by some measures the most long lived as an average of both men and women).

  • 0

    oyatoi

    Cleo:

    Since it's now 65, shouldn't that be lowered to 60?

    I`d say the figure of 65 in the article is a misprint. Explosive growth in the number of pension recipients and the rapidly dwindling ratio of workers to pensioners sets the stage for a progressive rise in the pension age. This will probably occur in two steps, firstly 67, later it will be upped to 70. It is also likely that the government will impose deflation adjustments that result in a net lowering of pension benefits. Together with the various "Tohoku tax surcharges" and an all but guaranteed rise in the consumption tax to in excess of 10%, that old truism about death and taxes being the only certainties in life once again proves true.

  • -1

    as_the_crow_flies

    I`d say the figure of 65 in the article is a misprint

    Nope, not a misprint. The way it works is, you are forced to stop working, simply because of your age. Then you sit and wait for five years for your miserable pension to kick in at 65. It's a total injustice, to deny people the opportunity to continue working, while at the same time giving them no means of support until five years later. what happens is that people are forced to destitute themselves in order to receive seikatsu hogo, and arrive at pension age with no savings. How would the rest of us manage to support ourselves for five years with no income? Right, I thought not.

  • 0

    oyatoi

    Nope, not a misprint. The way it works is, you are forced to stop working, simply because of your age. Then you sit and wait for five years for your miserable pension to kick in at 65.

    What you just described is the system as it is NOW. Reread the article and you will see that they are talking about raising the compulsory retirement age to 65 and that in line with this proposal, the pension eligibility age would also be raised. Raising it to 65 is a missprint BECAUSE IT ALREADY IS THAT. You are right though in pointing out the unfairness of forcing people to live a twilight existence from 60 until they reach the pensionable age of 65. If the new retirement age becomes 65 and the pension age 70, as the government appears determined to engineer, expect to see more and more geriatrics affixing waribiki stickers to unsold bentos at your local super late into the evening and doing whatever other jobs are open to those who, as the thinking goes, are so used to hard work that a little more squeezing won`t hurt them. Forgive the cynicism but it reminds me of Catch 22, where the number of flying missions keeps getting raised and flight crews are more likely to die on the job than survive to return home.

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