Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Lin vows pension reform consensus within a year

Lin vows pension reform consensus within a year

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Minister without Portfolio Lin Wan-i, right, yesterday talks to reporters at a Cabinet press conference after being named vice convener and chief executive of a pension reform commission under the Presidential Office.

Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times

The Executive Yuan has set up a pension reform office and expects to form a consensus over pension reform within a year, Premier Lin Chuan (林全) said yesterday.
The premier said that President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) takes the task of pension reform seriously and has set up a pension reform committee in the Presidential Office.
The new pension reform office was set up to assist the committee, Lin said.
“The pension reform office will, in place of the Presidential Office, serve as coordinator between the different branches of governments and ministries,” Lin said.
“As pension reform would have an impact on different social groups, the office will invite these groups to discussions to reach a consensus, which is not an easy task,” the premier said.
Minister without Portfolio Lin Wan-i (林萬億), who was named deputy convener and executive director of the pension reform committee, will be guiding the pension reform office, the Executive Yuan said.
Lin Wan-i said that Tsai had approved the guidelines for setting up the committee on May 27 and that committee meetings would be soon convened.
“The pension reform committee is composed of experts, academics and representatives from different fields and social groups. The government agencies will make public related information for committee members to submit reform proposals, which will later be referred to national pension conferences for discussion and a possible consensus, which in turn will be referred to the Legislative Yuan for review and passage,” he said.
The first committee meeting will be called this month, with the president attending, he said.
The committee will then hold weekly meetings in the following four to six months, which are to be followed by regional conferences across the nation and national conferences, he added.
The reform agenda is expected to be completed in a year, he said.
“We are hoping to establish a sound financial system to ensure the sustainable development of social protection; close the gap between pensions granted to different social groups to promote social solidarity; promote a fair division of premium payment by workers, employers and the government; and achieve partial integration of [different pension] systems to ensure ‘separate, but equal’ protection,” he said.
Lin Wan-i said that pension reform could have an impact on the nation for “100 years.”
“It is both significant and necessary,” he said, adding that it is “a difficult task and I will need everybody’s help.”
The minister reiterated a promise he made in March that he would resign if he fails to submit proposed reforms to the legislature for review by May 20 next year.

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