SSS: Higher contributions mean better benefits for members

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 2) - The Social Security System (SSS) is appealing to members not to see the recent hike in contributions as a burden, but rather as a means to increase funds for future use.

Speaking to CNN Philippines Tuesday, SSS Acting Media Affairs Head May Rose Francisco said, "The increase in contributions would be very important for the fund. It's one way of ensuring that the fund would be more stable and that we would be able to be prepared for the future benefits for our members."

She added higher contributions would mean better benefits for SSS members.

Funds primarily come from contributions, she said, with employers being partners.

"We reach out to them and make sure they pay...the contributions of their employees."

Francisco said, "We've always said that SSS is a form of savings for our members, and we just hope that they don't find it as a burden, because all of these will be coming back to them in the form of their benefits."

The increase on contributions was announced in March, and took effect on April 1.

That means that for an employee earning ₱10,000, ₱400 will be slashed from his or her pay check — an increase of ₱36.70 from the current ₱363.30. The employer, meanwhile, will now pay ₱800 instead of ₱736.70, an increase of ₱63.30 for its share.

The SSS said this 1 percentage point hike is just "reasonable," stressing that it will enable members to save more for retirement.

The minimum and maximum monthly salary credits will also be adjusted to ₱2,000 and ₱20,000 respectively.

SSS: When funds are stable, we will consider P1000 pension

When asked if the increase in pension will happen now that members are being asked to pay higher contributions, Francisco said, "The increase in contribution rate is based on the new law that has been passed. As for the additional ₱1,000, that's one thing that the SSS is working on."

Francisco said she did not have a time frame for the pension increase, but they would give notice on when the fund would be stable enough to support the increase in benefits for pensioners.