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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

SSS asserts stand on pension increase

THE Social Security System (SSS) has asserted its position that the P2,000 across-the-board pension increase is possible as long as there is a sustainable source of funding.

This was presented by the agency during the recent deliberations of the House committee on government enterprises and privatization (CGEP) for the increase and the rationalization of the powers, duties, and accountabilities of the Social Security Commission (SSC).

George Ongkeko Jr., SSS chief actuary and senior vice president, said in a press statement Tuesday, September 13, that the agency has always been supportive of the proposal to increase pensions as long as provisions on the additional sustainable source of funding will also be included to avoid the shortening of fund life.

“We are one with legislators in their desire to provide higher pensions for SSS pensioners. However, we also have to look after the welfare of other members and ensure that the fund life is intact,” Ongkeko said.

The proposed P2,000 pension increase would require about P56 billion for the first year of implementation, the agency said.

SSS expects this required amount to rise as the number of pensioners grows every year, it added.

Agency records showed that it currently pays benefits to about two million pensioners who yearly receive 12 regular monthly pensions and the 13th month pension.

Last year, SSS has paid about P102 billion in pensions, it further showed.

“Granting higher pensions without the parallel implementation of provisions on the source of funding can result in billions in annual net losses for the system, especially for proposals such as the P2,000 pension increase,” Ongkeko reiterated. (EPN)

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