By Linda Ike
The Director General, National Pension Commission, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar said strategic efforts to drive the Micro Pension Plan (MPP) remains one of the important areas of focus of the Commission in expanding pension coverage to the informal sector
Mrs Umar stated this on Thursday at a Journalists workshop organised by the commission in Abuja, with the theme: “Increasing Informal Sector Participation in the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS): The case for Micro Pension Plan
She said the expansion of the pension coverage include the small-scale businesses, entertainers, professionals, petty traders, artisans, and entrepreneurs.
Mrs Umar disclosed that the commission is planing to provide incentives such as health insurance to contributors under Micro Pension plan to encourage more enrollment hence the implementation is to curb old-age poverty by assisting the workers to contribute while working and build long-term savings to fall back on when they become old.
“This workshop is geared toward educating the media on the MPP and enlist their support to make the Plan popular amongst informal sector workers and the self-employed
She also noted the recent reforms in the commission, “PenCom increased the Minimum Regulatory Capital (Shareholders’ Fund) requirements of PFAs from N1 billion to N5 billion last year.
“The recapitalisation exercise had a 12-month transition from April 27 2021, to April 27 2022. As of the deadline, all PFAs have complied with the Commission’s directive to increase the Minimum Regulatory Capital (Shareholders’ Fund) from N1 billion to N5 billion.
“The recapitalisation exercise was to ramp up the capacity of the PFAs to manage the increasing number of registered contributors and pension fund assets, the value of which I am pleased to inform you stood at 9,795,957 and N14.27 trillion, respectively, as of June 30, 2022.
“The exercise is expected to bring about increased effectiveness and efficiency as well as improved service delivery in the industry” the DG said.
She reaffirmed the commission’s commitment to creating awareness and holding social dialogue on the workings of the Contributory Pension Scheme with relevant stakeholders towards the smooth implementation of the Contributory Pension Scheme in Nigeria.
Mrs Umar said, the workshop is an avenue for the Commission to interact and apprise its media partners of the developments and achievements in the pension industry while presenting the challenges faced in implementing the CPS. as well as to inform them on the implementation plan of MPP.