Legislation needed on raising retirement age

I am disappointed that the Government is still only encouraging companies to raise the retirement age, rather than mandating this through concrete legislation (Gardens by the Bay raising retirement age; July 26).

In January 2005, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in Parliament that he had asked the Ministry of Manpower to set up a Tripartite Committee to recommend measures to help older workers to work longer, and to support the raising of the effective retirement age.

He added that "it may involve raising the legal retirement age, but we should make this adjustment only when we are convinced that it is necessary and right to do so, and then only when we have prepared the ground and we are ready to do so".

It is now 2018. Has not enough time passed to prepare the ground, including employers, for this?

What would it take for the Government to deem it necessary and right to amend the legislation on the retirement age?

It is sad that only about 20 unionised companies have voluntarily raised their retirement ages or do not stipulate any retirement age.

Why are the rest of the employers dragging their feet?

It is time for our fourth-generation leadership to draw a line on this matter.

Perinpanayagam James

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 31, 2018, with the headline 'Legislation needed on raising retirement age'. Print Edition | Subscribe