Sun | Aug 20, 2017

NIS contributors to pay more to scheme

Published:Tuesday | February 21, 2017 | 2:10 PM
The Portfolio Minister Shahine Robinson says the NIF has increased by almost 12 per cent year to date this fiscal year.

Contributors to the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) will in the 2018-19 fiscal year be required to contribute more to the scheme.

Currently, the contribution rate for NIS is 2.5 per cent by employees, which is matched by a similar contribution by employers.

For the same period, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security will also make changes to the insurable wage ceiling and benefits payable to contributors.

At the same time, the Ministry is taking steps to carry out an evaluation of the governance structure of the National Insurance Fund (NIF).

The Ministry will this year review the Fund's investment policies and asset allocation strategies to ensure continued growth.

The Portfolio Minister Shahine Robinson says the NIF has increased by almost 12 per cent year to date this fiscal year.

This calendar year, the Ministry will also begin another actuarial review of the Fund.

The reforms being introduced are intended to ensure the long-term viability and sustainability of the NIS, while maintaining realistic benefits for contributors.

Robinson, who was responding to a Gleaner Editorial, says the Ministry will also be improving the Scheme’s administration and the modernisation of operations for greater efficiency and accountability.

In the current Estimates of Expenditure, now before Parliament, the Government has allocated $215 million to carry out reforms.

For the 2017-18 financial year, the Ministry plans to conduct a re-verification of pensioners and cleaning of employers’ database.

This is in an effort to ensure the accurate forecast and receipt of contributions.

In the upcoming financial year, which begins in April, the Ministry will also review the operations of the NIS.

It will also complete a roll out of a new information technology system to strengthen the operations of the Scheme and to reduce the time it takes to process pension.