politics

Gov't starts work on new growth strategy, with focus on labor reform

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The revamp would entail encouraging the private sector to hire more people with prior work experience, 

Politicians having to tell the business community to use a bit of common sense. Gotta love Japan.

They should have covered layoffs. It's ridiculous that Japanese employers see layoffs as a last, last absolutely last resort when other employers are screaming about a dire labor shortage.

"...companies are required to keep employees who wish to continue working after retirement age until at least the age of 65."

I don't get it. 65 IS the retirement age. That's when the state pension kicks in.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Here's a novel idea: Stop treating women like chattel; start paying them equal wages, job security, and responsibility as men. Obviously, this has to start with education.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Said it before and I'll say it again, Enforce the present Labor Laws. Anything they come up with will not work! Enforce the present Labor Laws!!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

For about the 50th time..... get rid of the "Seishain" category of labor and put everyone on equal footing. One category of labor..... divided into full or part time. Part time would be 30 hours or less regardless of whether you punch a clock or not. If you've worked for a company for a year or more and they want to lay you off..... pay the person 1 week of average weekly compensation. 10 years..... 10 weeks. Japan's current system is far to generous to the employee and makes it very difficult to layoff or fire employees. This way companies can get rid of the deadwood and go after more productive people.... and those, more productive / harder working people will command better pay. Under Japan's current system people that work hard and have talent basically have little incentive to continue to do so year in and year out.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Lifting the working age ceiling would serve to "realize a society where a person can remain active throughout their lifetime,"

Translation: Our racist policy of no immigration means that now everyone will have no choice but to work til they die because we can't afford to pay the pensions you have been paying into the economy for so many years.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Raise the minimum wage, give equality to all employees, ban unpaid overtime, enforce current labour laws and do away with the senpai system.

And while you're at it, put younger people in government who can relate to the modern society. It's time those old boy networks were put out to pasture once and for all!

12 ( +13 / -1 )

So you work as a slave for 45 years or so for a pension that you might not even get a good share of, and you're old and your body doesn't move like you wish for it to if you decide to go on trips after retirement.

Sounds like hell.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

 Japan's current system is far to generous to the employee and makes it very difficult to layoff or fire employees. 

Actually no it really isn't all that hard. They can, but they don't do it. The easiest excuse to use to fire someone, as layoffs do not exist here, is to state the person is "unable to be moved" it's a catch all reason. Companies just dont use it.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

plan to draw up an interim report by the end of the year.

They will then formulate an action plan, including a three-year road map, for Cabinet approval by next summer.

So it will take almost a year to even just come up with a ' roadmap' for approval....how many useless meetings is that?

LDP politicians are such a shining example of efficiency and productivity .

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Under the current system, companies are required to keep employees who wish to continue working after retirement age until at least the age of 65.

Right, let's make the law that there is no "required" retirement at 60 as there is now! Companies retire these employees, then make them contract employees, with limited benefits, pay is cut, along with no bonuses, BUT they are do the exact same job, in most cases, that they were doing prior to "retiring".

5 ( +5 / -0 )

So Abe's administration's great economic growth plan is to increase the working age to 70 - lol!!! If this is the best you can do, then Japan doesn't need you. Anyone can conjure up this overly simplistic plan. How much production are you projecting this plan will have? From what I've heard, in the Japanese business world, those who are near retirement are relegated to non-important work anyway, so how is this going to help?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Pretty standard stuff looking to increase the retirement age. Very common across the world. The problem might be a shortage of labor right now, but once automation really kicks in, it will be a shortage of income tax payers to pay for the care of vast numbers over 65 who cannot afford to pay their own way.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

The same statement we've heard for the three times Abe has been elected. The only thing that has changed are a few of the faces at the table.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Lifting the working age ceiling would serve to "realize a society where a person can remain active throughout their lifetime," 

good to hear of Abe-san's concern that the populace shouldn't be at a loose end after 40 years' work.... oh! but if they keep working in order to lead an active and fulfilling life, we won't be able to pay them the pension they paid in for all those years. still, しょうがないね。

(⌒▽⌒)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Lifting the working age ceiling would serve to "realize a society where a person can remain active throughout their lifetime," 

to paraphrase: work till they drop! (⌒▽⌒)

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Clueless octogenarians sleepwalking into oblivion. Depressing beyond words. Last one out switch the light off.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Sounds great! Would that include withholding my benefits a few years later as well?

It is a better idea than allowing immigration in any case right?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Pretty standard stuff looking to increase the retirement age.

Folks need to really understand something here. This is not about raising the retirement age. It's about letting workers stay in their same jobs AFTER they already retired.

Please re-read this sentence here, "after retirement age"

Under the current system, companies are required to keep employees who wish to continue working after retirement age until at least the age of 65.

The ONLY purpose is to lessen the burden on the social welfare/pension system, which is going to be underfunded if things continue as they are. By keeping people working, they will continue to pay into the system and NOT be taking out from it.

You "retire" at 60, but if you dont have income after your unemployment runs out (another story there) you will have to find another way to make money to live as pension benefits do not start paying out in full until you reach 65, for people born in 1963 and after.

There are exceptions to that rule, and there are ways to get "some" money but not full benefits.

The government is attempting to ease the labor crisis and social welfare/pension funding by "graciously" allowing elderly to continue to work!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Aged lawmakers to find ways of labor reform isn't a clear vision to me, they need more younger economic experts to set up the basic framework. Aged people up 65 who is getting new or different jobs should be satisfied to accept works (duties) as beginners on low wage when started, even though the government is helping companies to employ them. I can find some aged people complaining difficulties to follow the new systems or work with under ages(actually, inevitable to get jobs denying those). For those reasons of aged people have gaps to continue work under conditions, I suggest government to have meeting with experts of human resources to find better ways to aged people work on their availabilities. Perhaps, better to formulate manuals/simulations/plans amongst govt. officers, company employers and aged employees to everyone understand the offered job will evaluate this "trinity", govt. taxation, comp. profit and aged employees wage-ups by time. Well, if I say some people are not available, it isn't a problem of ages, anyone has to understand that. For example, no exception of selective interviews or the later trainings bc he/she is aged person.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Many many workers forced to retire at 60 are given taishokukin, a golden handshake, to tide them over until they are 65. Only seishain in big companies get them. The typical going rate for a big Japanese company will be 15 to 20 million yen. Such people will get a company and kosei nenkin pension at 65. If they can't get by, my instant suspicion would be that they must still be supporting their children, giving them large downpayments on houses, paying for juku and private school for grandchildren, etc.

If the husband has worked as a seishain and hits 65 still alive, to be frank that family is a winner. The following generation is far far worse off. If elderly workers can't get seishain wages in their sixties, well that is just the reality of many people who have no pension and far more responsibilities in their thirties.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

companies to continue employing workers past the age of 65.

Well, 70 even more from outside point of view those people still can work but if they really measure efficiency is not that good. When people getting older their mental and physical fitness are getting decline, yes I know there are some exceptions but sorry to say most of them just getting decline.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

What’s good for business is bad for society and workers.

If the labor reforms come to fruition, Japan is going to end up like many EU countries with double digit youth unemployment and unstable jobs like the US which will hurt spending and society as a whole.

The labor market works better in Japan for society than most of the developed countries.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is going to end up like many EU countries with double digit youth unemployment and unstable jobs like the US

Hardly, because the aging society says something totally different. Youth, defined as still in their teen years, will have, already have, untold opportunities in service industry jobs. There is a huge labor shortage, and youth, as in college grads, have options, they do not need to jump at the first offer they receive.

Japanese companies are fighting for employees, and once PT or contracted jobs in some areas are now full time positions, the problem is though, the pay is still far too low, and some youth make better money working 2 pt jobs than one full salaried position with benefits.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It has to be a new policy, the old one doesn't work. But, the new one isn't guaranteed to work either. Why ? because the thinking is still old. I believe that the working hours should be reduced, not increased. It is time to work 4 days per week, 6 hours per day, and 7 months per year. The earning gap has to be greatly reduced to support 467 model: every cut of the top will support 100 bottom.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"but once automation really kicks in, it will be a shortage of income tax payers" 

It shouldn't be. Raise taxes on companies that replace people with robots.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Personally I like that I can walk through an automatic ticket gate without having a human there to clip my ticket.

Given the extremely timid attempt to reform labour markets here so far, all can rest assured that little will come out of this and the Japanese culture will go along with it all about as much as premium Friday turned out to be economic boon.

Japan needs BOLD reforms (SaikoPsycho) offered some good thoughts to liquify and boost the productivity of its labour pool.

I am for companies employing workers as long as they like, and paying what they like. Employees need incentives to kick crap employers to the dirt so that the zombie companies finally die. The inertia of the Japanese worker gives them what they need to keep meandering along, which is an opportunity cost for all involved.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Just lip-service from the crony brotherhood. They’ve been spouting this same guff since Abe was elected and the only labor reform that has been enacted was to give corporations tax cuts and ‘urge’ them to pass it on as salary increases. There still has not been anything done about the child care crisis. There still has not been anything done about equality in the workplace. There still has not been anything done about these black companies enslaving employees. They set an overtime limit if 100 hours per month, which is still a ‘karoshi’ death sentence and many companies are still abusing it.

Looking at that photo, the only things missing are a few bottles of beer and sake and a nabe or two just to depict what this group of cronies really are.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Well they say a picture is worth a thousand words and this one says it all. Keep the old boys around and oh yeah, the next generation can take care of itself. Never liked them much anyways.

Business as usual then ay fellas.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Where IS the PM’s heart? Where has it been during his last 2 terms? Not with the people, but with the constitution. He doesn’t care about people; in his eyes, keep good enough alone. What’s hurting now is the debt and the money he doesn’t have for pensions, as was already mentioned above. Imagine senile an dementias going to the office? They may not know how to get home or to the office. Once there they just may look around them and ask themselves ‘why am i here?’ In all seriousness, why not have these old guys do some serious counseling or mentoring of our totallly lost youth? Be a big brother to those young and not-so-young who cant get their eyes of their phones or monitors, and help them advance. Japan is not only losing population but the few they have definitely needs guidance. I’m try to be nice.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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