Pensions at a Glance Asia/Pacific

Frequency :
Annual
ISSN :
2309-0766 (online)
ISSN :
2309-0758 (print)
DOI :
10.1787/23090766
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Pensions at a Glance Asia/Pacific 2011

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Author(s):
OECD
Publication Date :
25 Jan 2012
Pages :
108
ISBN :
9789264107007 (PDF) ; 9789264106994 (print)
DOI :
10.1787/9789264107007-en

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Pensions are a major policy issue in developed and developing countries alike. However, pension reform is challenging and controversial because it involves long-term planning by governments faced with numerous short-term pressures. It often provokes heated ideological debates and, sometimes, street protests.    Countries can learn valuable lessons from others’ pension systems and their experiences of retirement-income reforms. However, national pension systems are very complicated, involving much institutional, technical, and legal detail. Consequently, international comparisons are very difficult to undertake, making it impossible to transfer policy lessons between countries. Hence, this publication aims to fill this gap, with a particular focus on countries in the Asia/Pacific regions

This study combines rigorous analysis with clear, easy-to-understand presentations of empirical results.  It does not advocate any particular kind of pension system or type of reform. The goal is to inform debates on retirement-income systems.

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  • Click to Access:  Foreword
    Accurate presentation of pension systems of an economy and the comparison of systems across economies are crucial parts of policy analysis. Yet such presentations and comparisons are far from easy. They require a well-thought-out methodology, access to detailed information on national systems, verification of information and results by a network of pension experts to provide feedback to improve the quality and applicability of the research over time.
  • Click to Access:  Executive Summary
    Many of Asia’s retirement-income systems are ill prepared for the rapid population ageing that will occur over the next two decades. The demographic transition – to fewer babies and longer lives – took a century in Europe and North America. In Asia, this transition will often occur in a single generation. Asia’s pension systems need modernising urgently to ensure that they are financially sustainable and provide adequate retirement incomes.
  • Click to Access:  Introduction
    Pensions are a major policy issue in developed and developing economies alike. However, pension reform is challenging and controversial because it involves long-term planning by governments faced with numerous short-term pressures. It often provokes heated ideological debates and, sometimes, street protests.
  • Click to Access:  Overview of Retirement-income Systems
    Retirement-income regimes around the world are diverse and they often involve a number of different programmes. As a result, classifying pension systems and different retirement-income schemes within those systems is difficult. Perhaps the most well known of these taxonomies is the "multipillar" one of the World Bank (1994). In its current versions, this comprises five different pillars (Holzmann and Hinz, 2005). The focus of this report, however, is on mandatory retirement-income provision and so some of these pillars are not necessary here.
  • Click to Access:  Methodology and Structure of the Report
    This report builds on the approach adopted in the last Pensions at a Glance Asia/Pacific publication, and is a "microeconomic" one looking at prospective individual entitlements under all 21 of the economies pension regimes.
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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts Comparing Pension Policies

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    • Click to Access:  Key Features of Pension-System Design
      The features of the pension systems of the economies covered in this report are summarised in the table below. These follow the typology of the previous section, dividing the pension system into two tiers. The summary necessarily leaves out much of the institutional details. More complete descriptions are provided in the economy studies (Part II).
    • Click to Access:  Retirement-income Indicators
      The first two indicators are both replacement rates; that is, the ratio of pension benefits to individual earnings. These are given in gross and net terms, taking account of taxes and contributions paid on earnings and on retirement incomes. The next two indicators are based on pension wealth, again in gross and net terms. Pension wealth, unlike replacement rates, reflects differences in pension ages, indexation of pensions in payment and national life expectancy. The remainder of Part I consists of at a glance analyses of coverage, life expectancy, demographics and pension spending, each of which play a key role in pension modelling.
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    • Click to Access:  Introduction - Economy Studies
    • Click to Access:  China
      China has a two-tier pension system, consisting of a basic pension and a mandatory employee contribution to a second-tier plan. This system, which was introduced in 1998, was significantly revised in 2006. It covers urban workers and many of the parameters depend on province-wide (rather than national) average earnings.
    • Click to Access:  Hong Kong
      Employees including part-time and self-employed workers are required to join Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) scheme. MPF is a defined contribution scheme.
    • Click to Access:  Indonesia
      Employees in private sectors are covered by defined contribution plan.
    • Click to Access:  Malaysia
      Private sector employees and nonpensionable public sector employees contribute to the provident fund.
    • Click to Access:  Philippines
      Employees up to age 60 earning more than PHP 1 000 a month are covered by the basic, earnings-related and minimum pensions. There are special systems for government employees and military personnel.
    • Click to Access:  Singapore
      The Central Provident Fund (CPF) covers all workers including most civil servants. CPF is a defined contribution scheme.
    • Click to Access:  Thailand
      Private sector employees in the formal sectors are covered under the Social Security Fund (SSF). The old-age pension scheme under SSF is a defined benefit scheme.
    • Click to Access:  Viet Nam
      Viet Nam Social Security (VSS) manages and administers social security contributions and benefits (including pensions) for both private sector workers and government workers. The current pension scheme is a defined benefit scheme.
    • Click to Access:  India
      Workers are covered under the earnings-related employee pension scheme and defined contribution employee provident fund administered by the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) and other employer managed funds.
    • Click to Access:  Pakistan
      Workers of an industry or establishment with 5 or more employees are required to be insured under earnings-related pension called employees’ old-age benefit scheme. The model assumes that workers are covered by earnings-related pension (EOBI).
    • Click to Access:  Sri Lanka
      Employees in the formal private sector are covered by defined contribution plans: employee private fund, which is used in the model, employee trust fund or approved private sector provident fund. Civil servants were formally covered by public sector pension scheme, but since 2003 they contribute to defined benefit type social security scheme called contributory pension scheme.
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