Modern automobile union wants to extend the retirement age, but half of the employees are already over 50 years old

The modern automobile union wants to extend the retirement age, but half of the employees are already over 50

【PhoneAuto News】Nowadays, the problem of aging population has become a serious social issue in many countries around the world, and the situation in South Korea is even more severe. Recently, according to Korean media reports, the average age of employees at Hyundai and Kia companies is increasing. Over half of the employees are over 50 years old, while less than one-tenth of the employees are in their 20s. In this situation, the labor union of Hyundai and Kia is demanding an extension of the retirement age, but many people are concerned that this request will weaken the organizational vitality of the companies.


According to data, as of the end of 2022, Hyundai has 30,101 employees who are over 50 years old, accounting for 43.7% of its total workforce. On the other hand, the number of employees under 30 years old is 9,263, which is less than one-third of the number of employees over 50 years old. Kia’s age structure is even worse than Hyundai’s. At the end of last year, Kia had a total of 35,847 employees, of which approximately 55% (19,610 people) were over 50 years old. The number of employees between the ages of 30 and 50 is about 5,500. Employees under 30 years old account for only 6% of Kia’s total workforce.

The proportion of Kia employees aged 50 and above reached a peak of 60.6% in 2021 and has been slowly declining as more and more people retire. The number of employees in their 20s has almost doubled, from 1,017 in 2021 to 2,160 in 2022, but they are still a minority. The current age structure of Hyundai and Kia is centered around older employees because they have been in service for a long time, which also leads to a decrease in the number of new employees. Once employees join these two automakers, most of them continue to work until retirement age, so the number of young employees is even smaller.

The employees of the modern automobile factory assemble Genesis cars. Despite the increasing burden of labor costs caused by the growing number of elderly workers and the increasing risk of declining organizational vitality for the two car manufacturers, their unions still demand an extension of the retirement age. They hope to raise the current retirement age from 60 to 65. However, this practice has also raised concerns among some individuals. In their view, the increasing number of older employees at Hyundai-Kia will not only lead to an increase in the company’s compensation expenses but also make it difficult for the company to create new growth momentum.

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