SSS BENEFITS. Social Security System Senior Vice President for Administration Catherine Ciriaco tells residents about the benefits and processes of the state-run pension fund for private workers in the ‘Sulit’ regional conference in Baguio on Tuesday (May 29, 2018). Photo by Pamela Mariz Geminiano
BAGUIO CITY -- The Social Security System is seeking to change its charter to give it more leeway to invest member contributions in more productive ventures like government projects, so the state-run pension fund for private workers stays financially viable.
Social Security System (SSS) Senior Vice President for Administration Catherine Ciriaco said in a forum here on Tuesday that the proposed amendments to the 21-year-old SSS charter would ensure the continued expansion of benefits for SSS members, such as the additional PHP1,000 increase in retirement pensions and the coverage for more overseas Filipino workers.
Ciriaco related that last May 22, Senator Richard Gordon delivered his sponsorship speech at the Senate on Senate Bill 1753, which seeks to revise Republic Act 8282 or the Social Security Law of 1997.
“Tapos na kami sa Lower House, ngayon nasa Senate na, in fact interpellation na, after that approval na lang. We are very hopeful [na maaprove] para matapos na ang problema (We’re done at the Lower House. Now it’s at the Senate. In fact, it’s now in the interpellation process. After that is the approval. We’re very hopeful our predicament will soon be over. We can invest better, offer condonation, and we can cover more OFWs,” she said.
Ciriaco said the proposed amendments to the SSS charter would allow the agency to maximize use of its funds for bigger income.
“We need leeway to invest funds in worthwhile endeavors so it can generate more resources,” she said.
In an earlier visit to the city, former SSS Chairman Amado Valdez said the agency wants to invest by funding government projects, such as roads, but it is limited as to where it can put its funds.
Ciriaco is in Baguio City for the two-day “Sulit” campaign of SSS to inform the locals on the benefits of being members of SSS.
Ciriaco said the current actuarial life of the SSS, if its situation is not improved is only until 2036.
“Assuming that they will not be increasing the amount of contributions, the total assets for half a trillion will only last until 2036,” the SSS official said.
She added that if nothing is done now to save the fund, the government would have to subsidize it, meaning it would burden the taxpayers more.
“Eighteen years from now, mauubos na resources ng SSS to pay benefits (SSS’ resources would run out), so the government will guarantee it and it will be the taxpayers that will be shouldering the payment of SSS,” she explained. (PNA)