Deputy PM urges speeding up of reforms on social insurance policy

Thursday, 2017-11-30 10:37:51
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Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue speaks at the conference.
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NDO – Measures are needed to address shortcomings and weaknesses while continuing to promote the reform of social insurance policy as an important contribution to effectively implement the social security and sustainable development policies by the Party and State.

Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue made the above requirement during chairing an international conference in Hanoi on November 29, discussing reform of social insurance policy and sharing international experience in the field with Vietnam. The event was held jointly by the Ministry of Labour Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), along with the International Labor Organisation (ILO).

Addressing the workshop, Deputy PM Hue emphasised that the Party and State always pay attention to social welfare policy, in which the social insurance policy is one of the most important pillars. The National Assembly and the Government have promulgated a range of laws and decrees to reform and develop social insurance policies in line with the level of socio-economic development in each period.

Over the recent years, Vietnam's social insurance policy has been gradually improving, aiming to expand its coverage and create opportunities for all people to access, participate in and enjoy the benefits from such policies, thus bettering the legitimate rights and interests of the people.

To date, the country has over 14.6 million people participating in social insurance, accounting for about 30.4% of the labour force. Every year, between 4 and 5 million people are entitled to short-term social insurance schemes and an estimated 150,000 people enjoy long-term social insurance policies, along with nearly 3 million elderly people who enjoy monthly pension and social insurance.

Deputy PM Vuong Dinh Hue (centre) and the panel presiding over the conference.

However, Hue also pointed to the limitations in the current social insurance policy, such as low coverage of social insurance compared to other countries, and social insurance funds still implies a risk of imbalance in the medium and long term, especially in the context of an aging population and the shift of labour structure and employment due to the impact of economic integration, climate change and the fourth Industrial Revolutionary.

Therefore, in the coming time, the Deputy PM suggested that relevant agencies should focus on improving the social insurance policy, contributing to the reform of Vietnam's growth model by 2030 and linking economic growth with the guarantee of sustainable development and social progress and justice.

Meanwhile, it is necessary to renovate the social insurance model towards a multi-layered social insurance system with diversified forms of policies, flexible in design, and professional in operations associated with raising the quality of services and ensuring social security.

Chang-hee Lee, ILO Director in Vietnam, stressed the need to extend social security coverage to workers in the informal sector to formalise and improve their work conditions. "Vietnam’s success of expanding coverage of health insurance shows that the task of expanding the coverage for social security is possible," said Chang-hee Lee.

The ILO recommended Vietnam to consider the building of a multi-layered social insurance system based on positive experiences from expanding coverage of health insurance, while exploiting all financing options to promote sustainable development goals through sustainable employment and social security.

At the conference, domestic and foreign experts shared experiences on reforming social insurance system, especially in countries with similar socio-economic conditions to Vietnam such as China and other ASEAN nations.