Following reports that the HKSAR Government has extended the retirement age of newly hired civil servants from 60 to 65, retirees in Taiwan have stated that they wish to continue working.
According to a survey by recruitment website 1111.com.tw said 86% of retired persons in Taiwan want to continue to be part of the workforce.
The main reasons for them to keeping working included requests from family (35.9%), worry about not anything to do with life (13.6%) and to maintain a healthy lifestyle (8.7%).
Unfortunately, the report also found 68% of the respondents said they think corporates do not want to employ the elderly.
“This is the biggest challenge for retired people to rejoin the workforce. Many corporates felt that elderly people are too “old” to work,” said deputy general manager from 1111.com.tw, Li Da Hua.
He added that most retirees hope to have a monthly income of around 32,000 Taiwan dollars (around HK$8,000).
Getting the elderly out of retirement was found to be, in fact, crucial to the economic development of a society.
Lo Ming Tsai from Kuomintang of China expected the elderly rejoining the workforce will be able to generate up to one trillion Taiwan dollars in GDP.
“It is a pity to see professionals like doctors and teachers to retire after the age of 65. It is crucial for the development of different professionals, to have seasoned veterans share their valuable experience with the younger generations,” he said.
Currently there are 2.86 million elderly professionals in Taiwan, which is about 13% of the population. By 2025 the percentage of elderly people is expected to go up to 20%, making an ageing population a bigger concern than ever.
Various countries around the region, such as Singapore, have been similarly introducing policies to employ elderly workers. These include providing incentives for companies who employ older workers.
“I think if retired people continue to work, their income will be a boost the the economic development of the society and reduce the burden on the government to support them,” said Li.
Taiwan’s National Development Council’s, department of human resources development director, Zhang Heng Yu, said Taiwan had started to be aware of the challenges of an ageing population since 1993.
“In March this year, the council introduced elderly-friendly employment plans to encourage the elderly to rejoin the work force. These include having elderly- and family-friendly workplaces,” he said.