Following the enactment of the Law on Social Security on 2 November 2019 and issuance of Sub-Decree 32 on the Social Security Scheme for Pension Fund for Persons under the Scope of the Labour Law dated 4 March 2021 (“Sub-Decree 32”) (further detail can be found in this link), the Royal Government of Cambodia and the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training promulgated and issued of the following regulations to further detail the formalities and procedures for the pension scheme:
- Sub-Decree 144 on Determination of the Contributable Wage dated 19 August 2021 (“Sub-Decree 144”);
- Inter-ministerial Prakas 165 on the Implementation of the Social Security Scheme for Pensions for Persons under the Provisions of the Labour Law dated 28 June 2022 (“Joint Prakas 165”);
- Prakas 168 on the Procedures for Registration of Enterprises, Establishment, Employees and the Payment of Contributions for Persons under the Provisions of the Labour Law in the National Social Security Fund (“NSSF”) dated 5 July 2022 (“Prakas 168”);
- Prakas 169 on the Implementation of Social Security Scheme on Pension for Persons Defined by the Provisions of the Labour Law dated 28 June 2022 (“Prakas 169”); and
- Prakas 170 on the Commencement Date of Contribution Payments for the Social Security Scheme for Pensions under Compulsory and Voluntary Contribution Schemes dated 5 July 2022 (“Prakas 170”).
Sub-Decree 144 sets out the contributable wage for the pension scheme ranging from 400,000 riels (approximately USD 100) to 1,200,000 riels (approximately USD 300). This range may be changed at the initiative of the Board of Council of the NSSF. Based on Sub-Decree 32, once registered, an enterprise must pay a monthly contribution for the compulsory pension scheme equivalent, for the first 5 years, to 4% of an employee’s contributable wage with 2% to be paid by the employee and 2% to be paid by the employer, (ranging from USD 4 to USD 12 per month per employee), which will be implemented from 1 October 2022 onwards. The contribution rate will be increased after 5 years.
In supplementing Sub-Decree 32, Prakas 168 provides detail on the formalities and procedures for registering enterprises and employees with the NSSF and making contributions for the pension scheme. Upon registration, enterprises that are currently operating but are yet to register with the NSSF must do so within 30 days. The enterprises that are established after the effective date of this Prakas (being 5 July 2022) must register with the NSSF within 30 days upon opening of the enterprise. Enterprises that have already registered with the NSSF for occupational risk and health care schemes are not required to re-register with the NSSF. All enterprises registered with the NSSF must register their employees with the NSSF within 3 calendar days of the commencement of employment, except for the employees who already have an NSSF membership card.
With respect to contributions, the monthly contribution for the pension scheme must be made together with contributions for the occupational risk and health care schemes. Further, under Prakas 168, if an employee is 60 as of 1 July 2022, the employee is not required to comply with the compulsory pension scheme. They can, however, make contribution payments to the NSSF under the voluntary pension scheme by submitting a request within 12 months from the effective date of Prakas 168 (being 5 July 2022).
In terms of implementation, while Joint Prakas 165 prescribes the implementation date of the pension scheme from 1 July 2022 onwards, Prakas 170 sets the commencement date of the compulsory pension contribution as 1 October 2022. In essence, employers are obliged to start remitting their contributions and those of their employees to the NSSF by the 15th of the following month (i.e. November 2022) and submitting a monthly report on the number of employees to the NSSF before the 20th of the same month.
Further, Prakas 169 clarifies formalities and procedures for funerary grants, which are one of the four benefits under the pension scheme. Particularly, the funerary grant is set at five (5) months of the pensioner’s most recent pension fund payment or, at a minimum, two (2) million riels. The beneficiaries of funerary grants must complete and submit all required documents to the NSSF to receive the grant. The beneficiaries must notify the death of pensioner within two weeks and complete the form to demand the grant within three (3) months after the death of the pensioner.
We expect that more regulations and guidance will be released from the authorities, particularly with respect to how the seniority of employees is to be transferred when there is a suspension of employment and how the pensions of foreign employees, who return to their home countries but have not reached the age to receive pension benefits, should be treated.
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The information provided here is for information purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Legal advice should be obtained from qualified legal counsel for all specific situations.