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Elderly to account for 40% of Japanese in 2060

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© 2012 AFP

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I think it's ludicrous to "force" people to retire at age 60. In some cases even earlier. Japan seriously needs to rethink this for the future. If people want to retire that's one thing, however if they don't, or if they need to keep working then let them do so.

Adjusting pension benefits based upon age would also be appropriate in my opinion. If someone retires at 60, give them 60% of their benefits, 65, let's say 80% and at 70 everyone gets 100% of their benefits.

I know PLENTY of over 60 so-called "retired" folks who still want to work at their former jobs but can't because of the current age limits. It's a shame, if they can still do their job, quit discriminating against them based upon their age.

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I think it's ludicrous to "force" people to retire at age 60.

I absolutely agree. It's a tremendous waste of experience and knowledge. And I've noticed that people tend to age more quickly once they stop working. There's something rejuvenating and therapeutic about being needed and earning a living.

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And I've noticed that people tend to age more quickly once they stop working. There's something rejuvenating and therapeutic about being needed and earning a living.

Quite so! Working isn't just about making money but also the interaction between people that helps keep people going.

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And I've noticed that people tend to age more quickly once they stop working. There's something rejuvenating and therapeutic about being needed and earning a living.

Absolutely. And for people who've worked in toxic industries, such as with solvent or heavy metal exposure, retirement can bring full on mental illness in two to five years, when they lose touch with each other and the routine changes. I'm not exaggerating about psychiatric problems because i've seen it, but i don't know if there are any studies on this...

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Yubaru - "I think it's ludicrous to "force" people to retire at age 60."

I wouldn't be quite so forthright.

The needs of older workers need to be balanced with those of younger workers, many of whom will not be promoted or able to take on more/higher responsibilities until those in higher ranks (usually older workers) vacate their positions.

It's like a queue.

That said, I'm all for letting older workers work while they are productive, capable and willing.

Letting go of older workers often means letting loose decades of industry experience - best to keep that as long as possible, imo, even if it means re-hiring retired workers as consultants or mentors.

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The needs of older workers need to be balanced with those of younger workers

That sounds like a zero sum viewpoint to me. Older people who are still in work spend more and create more demand for goods and services. That means more jobs for everyone. Forcing them into retirement means that they become liabilities on the next generation of workers, who must pay taxes to cover the cost of unfunded government pensions. And because they have lower incomes, retirees are also likely to spend less. So the economy loses two ways, and the entire burden falls on the shoulders of younger workers. I can't imagine how Japan will cope when 40% of its population are non-working retirees. It'll be like a slave economy.

What really annoys me is that Japan will accept aging, doddering politicians but forces decent, hard-working people into retirement in their prime.

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This is 48 years away, the country might not make it to 2030 unless change happens now. Gee in 2060 in will be 81 years old. Its my son's children who will have to pay for this.

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We'll all be a part of that by 2060!

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I predict we'll hit those figures much much sooner than 2060.

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yep

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Letting people work longer is fine, but the calculations are wrong. When we talk about "working people" in Japan, it is tacitly understood these are mostly men; very roughly, about 50% of Japan's working age population - that is, Japanese women - do not work (full time). That is the real issue at hand. Get these 50% into the workforce.

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YubaruJun. 18, 2012 - 07:19AM JST

I think it's ludicrous to "force" people to retire at age 60.

@Yaburu, very good post and I agree.

It is not a government job telling people when to retire. It is up to each individual's decision. Japan needs to change it to an "open end" retirement like US. We have no mandatory retirement age at 60. Many seniors with special skills are still working and contributing to society..Japan needs to change.

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