TECHNICIAN Sinin Wasid remembers his heart sinking when his pay was cut by around 25 per cent after he turned 62 in 2008.
His company, precision engineering firm Makino Asia, explained that it was keeping with the industry practice of reducing the pay of older workers.
Despite the pay cut, Mr Sinin, now 68, decided to stay on.
"I thought if I were to leave, would other companies want to hire an old man like me?" says Mr Sinin, who started working for Makino Asia about 40 years ago and has primary-school education.
His wife is a housewife and they have three children in their 30s who are factory workers.
But things turned out for the better.
Over the years, Makino Asia has increased the salary of older workers like Mr Sinin to reward them for their contributions.
With overtime, Mr Sinin now earns over $2,000, which is slightly more than what he was drawing before he turned 62.
In 2012, the company stopped cutting the salary of workers after they were re-employed, unless their job scope changed.
About 5 per cent of its nearly 500 workers are above 60 years old.
Mr Sinin is thankful that the company has continued to hire him after he turned 65. When workers turn 65, employers are no longer legally bound to keep them on their payrolls.
He has been told by his supervisor that the company will renew his yearly contract as long as he is healthy. He keeps fit by lifting weights and riding a stationary bicycle at home every day.
Dr Moh Chong Tau, Makino Asia's chief executive, says older workers are assets. "Their experience and mentorship to younger workers outweigh the cost of hiring them," he says.