Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday announced that the government has plans to have a functioning social security system operational in the country by 2025, including universal health care, unemployment insurance and old-aged pensions.
Speaking at his Peace Palace office building in Phnom Penh, the premier said the government’s National Social Protection Policy Framework 2016-2025 would attempt to expand upon the country’s existing – but limited – social security programmes.
In his speech, Hun Sen said pregnant women and the disabled would be the first to benefit from the new policy.
“I think we should prioritise this point. For example, how much a pregnant woman should receive per month and for how long we are going to assist her during and after her pregnancy,” he said. “We need to think about them during their pregnancy.”
Pregnant women should be covered by next year, he said.
According to a document on the new policy, the new uniform national social security system would create a system covering five areas – pensions, health insurance, employment injury insurance, unemployment insurance and disability insurance.
It said that Cambodians would be encouraged to save parts of their incomes into pension schemes while they are of working age but that the government would also consider making contributions into the scheme on behalf of the poor.
The Council of Ministers approved the policy in March and a “Safety Net Council” was created to oversee its implementation. May Vann, director of the Finance Ministry’s Department of Industry and Finance, said most of the specifics of the policy still need to be figured out but would be operational by 2025.