Universal pension scheme to be rolled out from FY 2023-24

Budget 2023-24Prothom Alo illustration

Finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Thursday said the government has planned to launch universal pension system from FY2023-24.

“The ‘Universal Pension Management Act, 2023’ has already been passed by Parliament. I hope, it will be possible to roll out the scheme from FY 2023-24,” he said while unveiling the national Budget FY20-23-24 in Jatiya Sangsad on Thursday.

He mentioned that he had pledged to introduce a universal pension system in the budget speech for FY 2022-23 following Awami League’s election manifesto.

“That work has progressed substantially. Under the proposed scheme, a beneficiary can enjoy pension benefits subject to the payment of subscription up to the age of 60 years if s/he enrolls at the age between 18 to 50 years, whereas those who enroll at their age of more than 50 years have to pay subscription for a minimum of 10 years.”

He said the expatriate Bangladeshis will be able to participate in this scheme. If the pensioner dies before attaining the age of 75 years while on pension, the nominee of the pensioner will be entitled to the pension for the remaining period of the pensioner's completion of 75 years.

“If the subscriber dies before paying the subscription for at least 10 years, the deposited money will be returned to the nominee along with the profit, he mentioned.

A maximum of 50 per cent of the deposited amount can be withdrawn as loan by the subscriber by submitting an application. Contributions to the pension fund will be treated as investment and tax rebate can be availed against it.

Besides, the amount received as a monthly pension will be exempted from income tax.

Introduction of Universal Pension System is a very significant initiative for the inclusive development strategy of the prime minister, said the finance minister adding, a pension authority will be established very soon and will be activated through appointment of necessary manpower.