Social Security boss says an intake of skilled workers will boost operations

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The director of the Social Security Scheme of Antigua & Barbuda is of the opinion that attracting skilled workers from abroad will help the entity to be more efficient in its operations.
The Director of the scheme, David Matthias said on OBSERVER AM yesterday that Antigua & Barbuda has recorded a decrease in the influx of skilled workers, which has negatively affected the scheme.
“The general migration and inward flow of our Caribbean brothers and sisters has slimmed and slowed over the years and it does have an impact for Social Security. I am most hopeful that this thrust towards having this economic powerhouse will take off and that will be the driving force behind inward migration,” he said.
Matthias revealed that the recent increase in contributions has helped the scheme to increase the efficiency of its operations.
He stressed, however, that the increase is not meant to fix all of the problems facing the entity.
“We do recognise that contribution rate increases are not the entire solution to the problem. It will require a renewed portfolio in Social Security where investment income actually replaces missing contributions,” he noted.
The director added that having many people in a household making contributions also helped to boost the scheme’s cash flow.
“I, in particular, dream of the days when we were having 14- and 15-member households but we know that is not likely to happen with the advent of family planning,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Social Security director said that moving forward, the board is carefully managing the amount of money spent on administrative costs.
”We have spent a lot of time trying to control and manage administrative expenses … being able to pay, in a timely manner, pensions and other short term benefits to persons working in Antigua & Barbuda.”
Matthias was commenting on efforts being made to reshape the way the Social Security Scheme operates, as it celebrates its 44th anniversary.

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