The People’s Majlis has passed a bill to overturn the mandatory enrolment of expatriate workers in the pension scheme.
This amendment to the Pension Act was passed with 37 votes in favour, 7 votes against, and 7 abstentions, according to local media Sun Online.
The proposed amendment – submitted last month by Maavah MP Abdul Aziz Jamaal Abubakr – was welcomed by many expatriates who fear they will struggle to reclaim their contributions upon leaving the Maldives.
Article 12 of the Maldives Pension Act requires employers to enrol all employees, Maldivians and expatriates alike, in the retirement pension scheme. This requires employers to pay 7 percent of their salaries to the government pension fund.
The amendment bill argues that the majority of expatriate workers will move overseas to retire, defeating the purpose of the scheme. It will be enforced from the day it is ratified by the president and published in the government gazette, reported Sun.