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Nov 8, 2018

S.S.B. Holds Annual General Meeting

The Social Security Board held its annual general meeting today under the banner S.S.B. Connect.  The government program which provides economic security to persons who are retired, unemployed or unable to work reviewed its achievements and discussed challenges that the organization faced while providing services to customers in 2017.  Chief Executive Officer, Doctor Colin Young discussed S.S.B.’s performance in the past year.

 

Colin Young

Dr. Colin Young, C.E.O., Social Security Board

“S.S.B. Connect is S.S.B.’s version of its first annual general meeting.  It is an opportunity for us to engage with the stakeholders and contributors of the fund to explain to them how we served them in 2017.  It’s an opportunity to explain to them how the fund works.  We’ll discuss the financial sustainability challenges that we are currently experiencing at the fund and then we’ll also share with them in terms of the contribution reform proposal, in terms of promoting the kinds of actions that we need amongst the laborers, businesses and government to prevent the arrival of the financial cliff at SSB.  And then finally, it is also to share with customers the way forward for 2018 and beyond.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Is there any good news by way of this particular activity or event that customers should know of?”

 

Dr. Colin Young

“Well what we are sharing with customers is that last year, for example, S.S.B. paid out over seventy-point five million dollars in benefits.  We exist to serve contributors and we have been doing quite well in terms of the management of the investment portfolio and the rate of returns.  So people ought to be, rest assure that we are managing their money quite well.  The truth is however, is that social security schemes all over the world are in similar situations as Belize.  We have to continuously look at how we revise the contribution schedule so that we remain financially viable and we are approaching that period in the life of social security because we are one of the only schemes in the Caribbean region that has not touched its reform schedule over the last seventeen years.  So we want, we have been making good progress in the conversations with the unions and the business community.  We’ve traveled all over the country talking to persons and informing them of our financial situation and as you know, the unions have responded in principles quite positively.  They’ve agreed to the rate increase, as well as the ceiling increase.  The business community through the chamber has also done in principle agreed to the increase in the ceiling.  They did not agree yet to the rate but we are hoping that in the next couple of months we can form some kind of consensus among all of the tripartite bodies, government, unions, chamber so that we can do what has to be done which is to increase the contributions to the fund.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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