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Govt looking into extending re-employment age to 67

THE government is looking into extending the re-employment age from the current 65 to 67, but is unlikely to act on it soon.

Senior Minister of State for Manpower Amy Khor told Parliament that the Tripartite Committee on Employability of Older Workers has said that, with the Re-Employment Act having been in effect only two years, the government should allow time for its impact to be monitored before making further moves.

The Retirement and Re-Employment Act, which took effect in 2012, requires employers - with certain exceptions - to offer re-employment to workers when they reach the retirement age of 62.

The Tripartite Committee on Employability of Older Workers will meanwhile review and iron out outstanding implementation issues and update the law and the guidelines on re-employment of older workers.

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"We will announce the proposals, including the appropriate time frame for raising the re-employment age, when these are ready," Dr Khor said during the Committee of Supply debate on Manpower.

She said progress on re-employment has been smooth.

Preliminary findings indicate that 99 per cent of private-sector workers who turned 62 in the year ending June 2013 were offered re-employment; 67 per cent of them were re-hired on their existing contracts, with no change to their employment terms, she noted. "So far, the statistics have been encouraging. Among those re-employed in the same job in the private sector, 96 per cent did not experience a basic wage cut," she added.