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Home > Administration of the civil service >> Retirement

Civil Service pension schemes

The Government currently operates two statutory, non-contributory pension schemes for civil servants who are serving on pensionable terms. The Old Pension Scheme (OPS) which is governed by the Pensions Ordinance applies to pensionable civil servants who were appointed before 1 July 1987. The New Pension Scheme (NPS), governed by the Pension Benefits Ordinance introduced in 1987, is applicable to pensionable civil servants who were appointed between 1 July 1987 and 31 May 2000, and those who were appointed before 1 July 1987 but had exercised their option to join the scheme before 31 December 1995 or the specified option deadline.

Pension is normally granted to an officer when he retires from the service, or in other circumstances as provided under the pensions legislation. An officer's pension is calculated on the basis of his salary, length of service and pension factor under the respective pension schemes according to the prescribed formulae in the pensions legislation. An officer may choose to commute a certain percentage of his pension into a lump sum pension gratuity. The remaining part of the pension will be payable to the officer on a monthly basis until the officer passed away.

The main differences between OPS and NPS are as follows -

Retirement age 55 60
Provision for early retirement Yes No
Provision for deferred pension on resignation No Yes

Maximum commuted pension gratuity
(i.e. percentage of pensions payable as a lump sum upon retirement)


25% 50%

Useful Reference

- Pensions Ordinance (Chapter 89, Laws of Hong Kong)
- Pension Benefits Ordinance (Chapter 99, Laws of Hong Kong)

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