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Home > Letters to colleagues

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 3 April 2014



Dear Colleagues,



Consultation on Extension of the Service of Civil Servants



             The Civil Service Bureau (CSB) has released today a consultation paper on extension of the service of civil servants.  The paper is available at

             As set out in the consultation paper above, in the face of the demographic challenges arising from an ageing population and a shrinking labour force, the Government, being the largest employer in Hong Kong, considers it an opportune time to examine possible options for extending the working life of civil servants so as to enable us to better respond to such challenges.  At the same time, in anticipation of the higher wastage of civil servants in the coming years mainly due to the expansion of the Civil Service in the 1980s, we need to examine whether there are any operational and/or succession issues that require to be addressed.


             Against the above backdrop, CSB has conducted a study to assess the manpower and retirement situation in the Civil Service in the coming years, and to examine possible options for extending the service of civil servants after their retirement. 


             The consultation paper sets out the major findings of the study and the proposed framework embracing the following flexible retirement and employment initiatives for extending the service of civil servants –


 (a)   to adopt a higher retirement age for civil service new recruits as from a future date.  Specifically, we propose that for the civilian grades, the retirement age of new recruits should be extended by five years to 65, from a future date.  For the disciplined services, we propose that the retirement age for new recruits of all the disciplined services grades, regardless of their ranks, be set at 57, but may be further extended up to the age limit of 60 subject to an annual suitability assessment;


(b)  to provide Heads of Grade/Department with more flexibility to further employ officers, on a need and selective basis, after they have reached retirement age to fill civil service posts.  In this connection, we propose to make suitable adjustments to the existing mechanism on further employment.  As a related matter, we also propose that officers on further employment should not be eligible for consideration for promotion during the further employment period;


(c)    to introduce a new “Post-retirement Service Contract Scheme” for engaging retired officers on contract terms, on a targeted basis, to undertake ad hoc duties which require specific civil service expertise or experience; and


(d)   to streamline the control regime of post-service employment for non-directorate civil servants at junior ranks to facilitate their taking up of outside work after retirement, if they so wish.  


             The consultation will last for four months until 2 August 2014.  We look forward to receiving views and suggestions from staff, grade/departmental management and other concerned parties.  Taking into account the feedback received through this consultation and further examination of the relevant issues including the financial implications of the proposals, we will decide on the way forward and work out the implementation details.


             If you have any views on the proposals set out in the consultation paper, please forward them to CSB through one of the following means –


Mail:    Appointments Division

            Civil Service Bureau

               8/F, West Wing, 

     Central Government Offices

             2 Tim Mei Avenue, Tamar

             Hong Kong




Fax:     (852) 2530 1265


             I look forward to receiving your views and suggestions which would facilitate us in mapping out the way forward. 


Yours sincerely,

The signature of SCS, Mr Paul TANG

(Paul TANG)
Secretary for the Civil Service




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