The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has instructed its officials to focus on outreach to small enterprises and encourage them to register with the NSSF, noting that some of the businesses obligated to pay into the fund in its first month have been slow to do so.

NSSF director-general Ouk Somvithya told The Post on November 21 that the payment of contributions into the pension fund by the private sector has been delayed and the deadlines may be adjusted to allow more businesses to do so without penalty, in recognition of the fact that the establishment of the system is a big change for Cambodia.

“Because this is a new thing that the NSSF has just started, some businesses have not prepared the right documents or are confused about the rules. So in this opening period for the system, it may be delayed without punishment because we asked them to delay all payments now and we have just started the first stage so it all has to be implemented a little later,” he said.

The pension scheme for the private sector under the provisions of the Labour Law came into force in October, with registered businesses mandated to pay contributions of four per cent into the NSSF each month – two per cent deducted automatically from employees’ salaries and two per cent matched by the employer.

However, as of November 21, there were still some businesses that had not completed their obligations due to some technical issues, according to NSSF deputy director-general Heng Sophannarith.

With this delay, Sophannarith stressed that all businesses that are obligated to pay pension contributions must fulfill their obligations by the due date as they have been given extra time to arrange things without any penalties.

“Actually, the process of paying the contributions is going well, but we just started it, so maybe some businesses prepared the wrong documents, which are always sent back and forth or because their calculations were not correct, and so on. Regardless, these businesses are required to pay contributions to the NSSF, even though they will come in a little late for the first month,” he said.

At the recent NSSF monthly meeting, Somvithya instructed his officials to encourage small enterprises to register with the NSSF in order to protect the benefits and rights of their workers as well as to make sure they clearly know how to use the NSSF services to get care at health facilities.

As of October, there are 1,466,725 employees from more than 13,300 businesses registered in the NSSF system.