In a startling development, the registration of workers into the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) took a nosedive in the second quarter of 2023 with new Retirement Savings Accounts (RSAs) dropping by a staggering 23.9%.
This sharp decline follows a 10.2% YoY decrease in the first quarter of 2023 (Q1’23) and is causing concern among financial analysts and policymakers.
According to the second-quarter report released by the National Pension Commission (PenCom), only 63,693 new RSAs were registered in the quarter ending on June 30, 2023.
This is a significant drop from the 83,654 recorded in Q1’23 and 93,114 in the same period in 2022.
Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers emerged as the leading provider, accounting for 30% of total enrollments, while NPF Pension Fund Managers registered the lowest numbers with just 33 new RSAs, a mere 0.05% of the total.
Access Pensions, Arms Pensions, and Leadway Pensure secured the second, third, and fourth positions, respectively, in terms of RSA registrations. Conversely, Nigerian University Pension Management Company, Veritas Glanvills Pensions Limited, and Guaranty Trust Pensions Managers Limited lagged behind.
This alarming trend in CPS registration raises questions about the state of retirement planning and financial stability among workers, prompting a need for a closer examination of contributing factors and potential solutions.
Pension Fund Administrators Channel N130 Billion into Infrastructure Investments
Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) have strategically invested N130.18 billion from the Contributory Pension Scheme into infrastructure projects by the end of September 2023.
The data from the National Pension Commission reveals the commitment of PFAs to diversifying their investment portfolio while maintaining compliance with the Pension Reform Act of 2014.
As of the reporting period, the total assets under the Contributory Pension Scheme amounted to N17.35 trillion.
In addition to infrastructure investments, PFAs directed funds into various avenues, including domestic and foreign ordinary shares, federal and state governments’ securities, and money market instruments.
The investment strategy aligns with the amended investment regulation introduced by the commission.
The regulation outlines stringent requirements to ensure prudent and compliant investment practices in line with the provisions of the Pension Reform Act.
It emphasizes that pension fund custodians should adhere to written instructions from licensed PFAs regarding the investment and management of pension fund assets.
The regulation also sets guidelines for allowable investments outside Nigeria, and PFAs are cautioned against contracting out the custody of pension fund assets to third parties without prior approval.
This strategic approach not only upholds regulatory standards but also serves the long-term interests of contributors, ensuring a balanced and diversified investment portfolio.
Federal Government Completes N1.02 Billion Payment to Power and Transport Pensioners
The Federal Government announced the successful disbursement of N1.02 billion to 7,091 pensioners from the Power and Transport Sectors of the Parastatals Pension Department.
This vital step to fulfill pension obligations was revealed by Olugbenga Ajayi, the Head of the Corporate Communications Unit at the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD), in a statement released on Sunday.
The allocated sum accounts for 39% of the accrued pension arrears owed to retirees in these sectors for the period spanning from August 2015 to September 2023.
The process involved a meticulous calculation of each pensioner’s monthly pension based on their career details, salary structure, and applicable pension increments.
This commendable initiative stemmed from the realization that 7,091 pensioners in the power and transport sector were receiving inadequate pension payments due to discrepancies within the inherited payroll system managed by PTAD.
Dr. Chioma Ejikeme, the Executive Secretary of PTAD, reiterated the government’s commitment to upholding fairness, equity, and justice, ensuring that every pensioner receives their rightful pension under the Defined Benefit Scheme.
Dr. Ejikeme also assured federal pensioners that the payment of accrued pension arrears would continue until all obligations are satisfied, subject to the availability of government funding.
This announcement underscores the government’s unwavering dedication to the welfare of retirees and is a significant milestone in addressing outstanding pension liabilities in the country.
Nigeria’s Pension Industry Reaches New Milestone as 10 Million RSAs and N16.76 Trillion in Assets
The National Pension Commission (PenCom) announced that as of the end of the third quarter of 2023, the number of Retirement Savings Accounts (RSAs) under its Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) has surged to 10 million.
What’s more, the pension assets under current management are now worth N16.76 trillion in today’s value.
During an interactive session held in Kano for the organized private sector, Dr. Umar Farouk Aminu, Commissioner of Administration at PenCom, delivered the news on behalf of Director General Aisha Dahir-Umar.
Aminu highlighted PenCom’s substantial strides in ensuring a seamless implementation of the CPS, emphasizing their focus on deploying the Enhanced Contributors Registration System (ECRS) within the pension industry.
Dahir-Umar acknowledged the rapid growth of Nigeria’s pension sector, underlining the introduction of the Data Recapture Exercise (DRE).
The DRE mandates all RSA holders who joined the CPS before July 1, 2019, to update their information with their respective Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs).
Furthermore, PenCom has successfully transferred contributions worth N10.20 billion to the RSAs of 142,486 NSITF Scheme contributors. They continue to prioritize the smooth transition of NSITF contributions into RSAs.
This milestone was celebrated at an interactive session in Lagos, where calls for collaboration among all stakeholders were reiterated.
The introduction of the RSA Transfer System (RTS) in 2020 was highlighted, showcasing its significant impact on improving service delivery by PFAs.
Adewale Smatt Oyerinde, the Director General of NECA, expressed optimism that these developments and deliberations would drive further advancements in Nigeria’s pension sector.
The achievements underscore the growing importance of prudent financial planning and management in the country.
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