Progressive steps to raise retirement age
(jianjinshiyanchituixiu) China will raise the retirement age in progressive steps, Hu Xiaoyi, deputy minister of Human Resources and Social Security, said on Tuesday. Considering China’s current development stage and emerging problems, raising the retirement age would have to figure on the government agenda, he said.
By emphasizing the term “progressive”, Hu implied that the retirement age would be raised gently so as not to make things difficult for the people. According to Hu, the reform would be implemented in phases, and is likely to start with people retiring at the youngest age and then expand to cover others. He, however, denied that civil servants would be the first to have their retirement age extended.
Employees will be notified a few years before the scheduled retirement date and the government will explore employment channels for senior citizens that won’t reduce opportunities for youths, Hu said. It is likely that the government will raise the retirement age by a few months each year to ensure a smooth transition and complete the reform over a relatively long time.
By implementing the reform in a progressive way, the country will “not only realize steady transition of the new policy, but also avoid a huge impact on the current employment situation”, he said. The current retirement age in China is 60 years for men, and between 50 and 55 for women. But with life expectancy increasing to 74 years and working conditions improving drastically, there is need to raise the retirement age, Hu said.