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ASIAdocument.write(“” + m[today.getMonth()+1]+ ” “+ today.getDate()+”, ” + theYear + ” “);HOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperChina Daily Global PDFChina Daily Global E-paperChina / Cover StoryTop NewsPoliticsSocietyBusinessCover StoryScience/TechPeoplePhotosMetro BeijingRegionalPension: the age-old problemBy He Na and Chen Xin(China Daily) Updated:2012-06-25 07:30Comments Print Mail Large Medium SmallWorkers fear they may be pensioned off in their prime, He Na and Chen Xin report in Beijing.Time has been kind to He Yumei. The experienced nurse has such a youthful complexion that she and her daughter are often mistaken for sisters. Few people believe she is 52, just three years away from one of the mandatory retirement ages for women in China.He, who works at a hospital in Jilin city in the northeastern province of Jilin, has boundless energy and even the trainees in her department comment on her high work rate.”I really cant associate the word retirement with my mother, and neither can she. Shes a career-oriented person and would definitely be depressed if she stayed at home every day,” said her daughter Wang Qiao, 22.”I am in comparatively good health and full of experience and passion for my work. Why should I stay at home at such a young age? The average lifespan in China is over 70,” He said.More important, as a single mother, shes the familys main breadwinner.”My daughter needs a lot of money to complete her further education. My pension would only be half my current monthly salary of 5,000 yuan ($785) and would hardly cover our living costs and mortgage. I heard some people say the retirement age may be raised. If thats true, Ill raise both hands,” she said.A proposal to extend the retirement age triggered heated discussion on the Internet after officials at the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security suggested on June 5 that an extension is inevitable because of Chinas continuing social and economic development and increasing life expectancy.”Since the 1970s, the retirement age has been set at 60 for men and 55 or 50 for women, depending on their job. Thats much earlier than in other countries. The general retirement age in European countries is 65,” said Xia Xueluan, a professor of sociology at Peking University in Beijing.”With life expectancy increasing, there should be a corresponding change in the pension policy. However, because the extension will affect everybody, we need to avoid strict regulations and implement a voluntary and flexible policy, depending on peoples health and willingness to work,” he said.”That would be good news for me. Otherwise, I would have to find another job after retiring to make ends meet,” said He Yumei.However, an extension is the last thing her brother-in-law wants. Wang Qizhong, 50, a driver at a small-scale private tire factory, earns 1,500 yuan in cash per month, but his employer makes no contribution to his insurance or pension payments. Every month, Wang has to pay 450 yuan into his pension account with the local social security bureau. “My wife and I dont have permanent jobs, so we have to pay the pension insurance ourselves,” he said.His wife, 49, who has been laid off, used to sell vegetables on the street, which is technically illegal although the authorities often turn a blind eye. However, the street is not a safe place for vendors and they play a perpetual game of hide and seek with the chengguan, urban management officers, who consider the sellers an eyesore.”The postponement of the retirement age will make our lives even more miserable. Even when I work 30 days a month, my wage is still less than my sisters pension will be. I will be the first one to go against the policy and will vote for earlier retirement instead,” added Wang.”Even my neighbor, whos a teacher and is set to retire next year, doesnt want to leave work. If the retirement age is raised, people like my sister and neighbor will continue to enjoy medical services and various types of allowance. But people like me, those who dont have stable jobs, once we lose our jobs, we not only do not have an income but still have to hand over a lot of money every month. Do you think well applaud an extension?” he asked.A migrant worker carries his bag as he leaves Bozhou Railway Station in Anhui province late last month. Liu Qinli / for China DailyStarted in 1997, Chinas current pension system consists of public and individual accounts, both funded by social security taxes. Employers pay an amount equal to 20 percent of each workers wages each month to fund the public account. Workers also pay 8 percent of their wages into their individual accounts. They must contribute for at least 15 years to become eligible for a pension and the amount they receive depends on the earnings that produced the sum in both accounts.Previous Page1 2 Next PagePrevious Page1 2 Next Page8.03KPhotoNight views of Harbin through the lensTibetans take train home after pilgrimage or travellingWorlds largest shaftless Ferris wheel built in ChinaAncient cities to be connected by Xian-Chengdu high-speed railwaySnow turns Harbin into winter wonderlandReed Catkin Festival held in WuhanSocietyPoliticsHot TopicsScience/TechBusinessCover StoryFTZ simplifies process to launch businessesJapan can offer experience, expat saysApplication for work streamlinedAwareness of law aids resolutionAir Force units explore new airspaceLow wages and lack of respect responsible for kindergarten abuse, experts sayLiu heralds UK partnership in education and researchAgency ensuring natural gas supplyUN envoys trip to DPRK praised by BeijingChina moves to secure natural gas supply amid rising winter demandXi asks China, Canada to work for substantial tiesCooperation necessary for success, leaders sayLiving in space: How astronauts train, eat and workTeachers excused for lunchtime drinksWaiting for Shenzhou XICancer agent found in 44 cities drinking waterAt Ikea eatery, its no pay, no stayChina lose 2-0 to Uzbekistan in World Cup qualifier, coach Gao resignsC919 gains another 55 orders, lifting total orders to 785Services offset dip in manufacturingFintech to energize real economy, cut risksChinas Long March rockets complete 60 commercial launchesEngineers achieve breakthroughChina-made components add securityOnline shopping rings up customer complaintsImport expo to focus on advanced techSME mobile market platform receives first clientsChina top importer of US soybeansAir China opens direct route from Beijing to BarcelonaInsurance-based trust launchedDandelion helping to sow the seeds of stability for membersCover storyVisa change may boost tourism to USThe wrong side of the roadBuilding ban begins to biteVillagers call on Japan to atone for massacreMost ViewedTodays Top NewsSeven villagers murdered in N ChinaChina steps up tobacco control effortsFive jailed for separatism in XinjiangLetter asks for leniency in poisoning caseAntibiotics in surface water pose indirect health riskTianjin airport opens up transit link to BeijingHigh levels of antibiotics in Chinas major riversChina to dig tunnel for Asian rail systemBering strait line to US possible, experts sayChina: Stop oil rig harassmentPancake panic as tourists in Shandong seize 5,000 kilograms of the tasty treats, an exploded phone battery shuts down subway in Shenzhen and US-grown genetically modified corn gets the boot.HighlightsSaying goodbye to a life of grimeComing to a small screen near youEducation: Variety is the spice of academic lifeXinjiang hopes to prove that the west is bestHot TopicsAntibiotics in waterUniversity poisoning caseFake overseas drugsLeaks of State secretsHeart donationDeep Springs CollegeWoman leaking state secretsH5N6Inflation subsidyPollution feesSpecialBeijing integrates with Tianjin, HebeiSex education for children in China…| About China Daily | Advertise on Site | Contact Us | Job Offer |Copyright 1995 -. 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