Sri Lanka’s private sector trade union to discuss proposed pension scheme with employees and other unions

Apr 23, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s private sector trade union organization, the Inter Company Employees Union (ICEU) has decided to discuss the action to be taken against the government’s proposed pension scheme for the private sector.

ICEU head Wasantha Samarasinghe told ColomboPage that the union has organized a meeting on Monday (25) morning at the Nippon Hotel in Colombo to discuss the proposed pension scheme with other trade unions and representatives of private sector establishments that do not have any pension benefits.

Samarasinghe said the union would discuss the pension scheme in detail and the issues that need to be addressed in order to benefit the private sector employees.

According to the private sector trade unions, the proposed pension scheme for the private sector was unacceptable since it is a contributory fund that would last only until monies last in the personal accounts of the fund’s members.

“The government’s proposed scheme cannot be considered as a pension scheme. Paying money off one’s personal account cannot be considered a pension scheme,” Samarasinghe said.

A person is eligible for the proposed pension only after he contributes money for a period of 10 years and the pension is paid only after the member is 60 years old, he said.

“If the member does not complete the stipulated 10 years or dies after contributing money for 10 years, the monies deducted from his salary are lost. Widows or any other family member is not entitled to receive the pension benefit. The government would then pay 60% of the monies in the account and close it. The employee stands to lose out a large portion of his monies,” Samarasinghe said.

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