Min. Jordan calls on NIS to review sustainability plan
– agency unveils commemorative stamp for Jubilee anniversary
DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, September 25, 2019
In honour of its Jubilee anniversary, the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), last evening, unveiled a commemorative stamp to celebrate the milestone at a simple ceremony at the Umana Yana.
In his address to those gathered, Minister of Finance, Hon. Winston Jordan said he is cognisant of the challenges that NIS faces to maintain financial sustainability. This, he said, was revealed in 2016 International Monetary Fund (IMF) report conducted on social security schemes in the Caribbean, the minister said.
An ageing population, slow economic growth and high unemployment were major contributors to the actuarial deficit that social security schemes face in the Caribbean. He then called on the agency to review their sustainability plan noting that the several recommendations to reverse the trends were also in the 2016 IMF report
“I am not suggesting all the reform measure proposed by the IMF study are suitable for our country… however, I enjoin the Board of Directors and management to urgently review the scheme sustainability plan and come up with country-specific solutions to address these challenges,” he underscored.
This, he said, will help the scheme to offset the billions lost due to a reckless Colonial Life Insurance Company (CLICO) investment in a bygone period.
Additionally, with the recent oil finds, Minister Jordan said Guyana will be one of the world’s top oil-producing nations per capita. That, in itself, will see the economy of Guyana expanding by double figures, as such he urged the agency to be ready to “seize the moment”.
“You must continue to build capacity and put the necessary institutional measures in place to ensure that all employers, employees and self-employed individuals are registered with the scheme and that their contributions are remitted in a timely manner.”
The Finance Minister also noted that the NIS’ 50 years of service to Guyanese citizens is indeed a significant milestone worth celebrating symbolically. He said, over the years, the agency has evolved and continues to develop to serve the citizens of Guyana. Underscoring the fact that access to social services is pivotal, Minister Jordan assured that the government will make every effort to ensure Guyanese continue to enjoy bigger and better benefits.
Deputy Postmaster, Jessemy Lynch said the launching of the stamp is not only a “good thing” for the NIS but all of Guyana. “Postage stamps are used by nations to portray their history, their culture, as well as other historical subjects. It is a major way in which subjects are noticed and re-promoted. In this manner, today NIS has been immortalised.”