ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will raise the retirement age for the purpose of the Employment Provident to 60 years and remove the difference between men and women, Finance Minister and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaska said.
He said the retirement ages of men and women were different now with women having a lower age.
The life expectancy of men is 72 and women 77 so having a lower retirement age for women did not make sense, he said.
“Therefore, based on the life expectancy, it is proposed to amend the Employees’ Provident Fund Act to expand the retirement age for both men and women up to 60 years,” Rajapaksa told parliament.
“I wish to also bring to your notice that at the time of the adoption of the Employees’ Provident Fund Act, life expectancy for females was as low as 57.5 years and life expectancy for males was 58.8 years.”
At the moment contributors can get their EPF balances when they retire at the age of 55 years after contributing all their lives to the fund.
State workers get pensions without contributing anything.
It is not clear whether private sector workers will now be blocked from taking the EPF proceeds when they retire at 55.
The state uses EPF funds to borrow at low rate fund the deficit.
The proposal comes as the budget said state workers will be given housing loans at 7 percent.
Sri Lanka’s rulers generally treat private sector workers as second class citizens, critics say.
Sri Lanka’s rules tax vehicles of private citizens at probative rates while giving tax slashed or tax free cars to state workers and the elected ruling class. (Colombo/Nov18/2020)