Minister defends increased retirement ages
  • By P. Thao | | May 30, 2019 05:08 PM
Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung spoke to Dantri/DTiNews on May 29 about the new proposed retirement ages which will be increased from 60 to 62 for men and from 55 to 60 for women.


Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung

Many people, especially employees don’t agree with increased retirement ages. Has the ministry gathered opinions from the workforce before submitting the documents?

We did gather opinions from them. Resolution 28 on social security policy reform clearly states that employment rate, ageing population and the stability of the social insurance fund must be calculated. The retirement ages must be adjusted in order to deal with an ageing population by 2035.

Vietnam is still in a golden population era but the population already started ageing since 2014. In 2000, Vietnam had 1.2 million people of working age. The number dropped to 400,000 and the number of people over 60 years old accounts for 7% of the population. Vietnam is one of the countries with the fastest ageing rate.

The retirement ages were established in 1961. At that time, Vietnam’s average life expectancy was 45, much lower than the current 76.6.

Is increasing retirement ages a way to balance the pension fund since the pension fund exhaustion has been mentioned several times?

The contribution time is short while the time they are entitled to enjoy the fund is long. In many countries, it is designed to provide 30-45% of the final average salary at retirement while this rate in Vietnam can go up to 70-75%. It's necessary to adjust retirement ages to balance the fund.

What do you think when several NA deputies said using pension fund exhaustion as a reason to raise retirement ages is not persuasive enough?

Raising retirement ages belong to a scheme which will affect the insurance, job, labour market in general. The retirement age will be raised gradually to 62 for men in 2028 and to 60 for women in 2035. People that have deteriorating health, heavy labour job or work in a hazardous environment will be able to retire five years early.

We also care for the workforce and the government is reviewing hazardous or manual jobs.

What about the worry that young people will lose job and promotion opportunities?

The first things were taken into account while adjusting the retirement age is economic development and the employment rate. 46% of people keep working after retirement. In many rural areas, there are mostly old people and women. The population is ageing. It's not about old people or officials hogging the positions. We have to think about the future.

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