NNPC report

Contributory Pension assets rise to N9.03tn

The total assets under the Contributory Pension Scheme rose to N9.03tn as of the end of March 2019.

The funds, which had continued to record a steady rise, was N8.33tn at the end of August 2018.

Figures obtained from the National Pension Commission on Thursday revealed that N6.5tn or 72.08 per cent of the assets were invested in FGN securities.

Total workers under the scheme also rose to 8,569,037 in the period under review.

The Pension Reform Act, which introduced the CPS, was inaugurated in 2004 and provided a contributory arrangement in which the employer and employee contribute to the workers’ RSAs.

However, the CPS had only been opened to the formal sector since inception, until the Federal Government officially extended it to the informal sector in March 2019.

As part of the financial inclusion objectives of the government, the Pension Fund Administrators were urged to ensure the development of the micro pension plan, to enable the artisans and other self-employed to plan for their financial future.

The acting Director General , PenCom, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar, said that the micro pension plan targeted the significant majority of Nigeria’s working population who, incidentally, operated in the informal sector.

The President, Pension Funds Operators Association of Nigeria, Mrs Aderonke Adedeji, said that the issue of the role of pension funds in economic development had moved into the focus of public attention, particularly with regard to Nigeria’s growing need for long term capital.

She explained that successful mobilisation of pension fund assets and its contributions to the economic growth of any nation were essential policy objectives.

“For the first time, our country can now boast of a long term funding base and the impact to date has included the funding of the government and government projects, development of the capital market as well as increased foreign development inflows,” she said.

While this is positive, she added, a note of caution must be raised in view of recent agitations to access the funds for infrastructure.

She said, “In principle, the industry has no objections to funding infrastructure. In fact, there are benefits to doing so. However, it must be understood that such investments must be in well structured and creditworthy instruments. The position is enshrined in the law and supported by PenCom regulations.”