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Why does the Government not exempt older workers (above 55 years of age) from taxation to help them when the economy is not doing well?



Currently, older workers are eligible for a higher quantum of earned income tax relief. While individuals below the age of 55 may claim $1000 of earned income relief, those between the age of 55 and 59 may claim $3,000 of earned income relief and those aged 60 and above may claim $4,000 of earned income relief.

With effect from YA2003, the first $20,000 of income is also not taxable. Most older workers earning about $2,000 a month would therefore be paying minimal (or nil) tax and will not benefit from such tax exemption.

Furthermore, exempting tax would have limited impact in improving the ''employability'' of the elderly group of workers as the cost to business/employers remains unchanged.

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