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Raising the Retirement Age; Postnatal care - a growth industry; Islamic Banking launches in Hong Kong (22 Aug 2008)


England, Singapore, Germany, and the United States are among the many countries that have considered raising, or already decided to raise, the retirement age to cope with a growing elderly population. Often though, this just means delaying pension payouts to save the state money, and is not accompanied by age discrimination legislation, which would yield the benefits. For many elderly people however, it's not just about the money. It brings health benefits and a sense of purpose. We look at one restaurant, Gingko House, set up to give a group of elderly people ongoing employment. And in our studio Lee Cheuk-yan of the Confederation of Trade Unions, and Dr Esther Chow of the City University of Hong Kong look at the advantages and complexities of extending the working life of Hong Kong's elderly. Once, so-called "confinement ladies" or "wet nurses" helped new mothers to cope with the changes in their life, and with their new child. Now, postnatal care workers are filling the void, and providing them is a business opportunity. Some postnatal care service companies have been set up by groups of friends. Others have been established by nurses and other professionals. On Monday, a local branch of a Malaysian-owned Hong Leong bank launched the first Islamic banking window in Hong Kong.It hopes this initiative will allow it to expand its international Islamic financial business and make cross-border Islamic compliant transactions easier. It's the latest step in Hong Kong ’ s development as a provider of so-called Sharia financial services.

The Pulse
Publish Date: 
Friday, August 22, 2008
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