Pension administration and supervision has received a boost with the completion of the GH¢50 million Switzerland government State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) project.
The 10-year project which started in 2014 was sponsored by the Switzerland government.
The project include the Risk-Based Supervision (RBS) System, which will enable pension corporate trustees to send real-time information analysis to the National Pensions Regulatory Authority, provision of ICT facilities and training for the staff and management of the NPRA.
The Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Mr Bright Wereko-Brobby, in the speech read on his behalf yesterday, during the end of the project engagement with the stakeholders and the media, said the project marked a great milestone for the pension industry in Ghana and the NPRA.
He said pension supervision across the globe required, among other things, a dedicated focus on protecting the interests of pension fund members and beneficiaries, by promoting the stability, security and good governance of pension funds.
The Deputy Minister indicated that pension supervision, involved the strict oversight of pension institutions such as corporate trustees, fund managers and custodians as well as scheme operators.
That, he said was done by the enforcement and promotion of adherence to compliance with regulations relating to the structure and operation of pension schemes.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NPRA, Mr Hayford Atta Krufi, expressed gratitude to the Switzerland government for support.
Mr Krufi said in 2014, the Swiss government came to the aid of the Authority with a grant of 2.4 million Swiss Francs under the SECO-sponsored project.
He said the phase one of the SECO Project was aimed at improving the regulatory functions and internal functioning of NPRA.
“Through this project support, the long-standing legacy problem associated with the transfer of TPFA was resolved. This indeed freed the hands of the Authority to focus on its core mandate. This phase also helped the Authority to embark on a sensitisation campaign across the country to create awareness of the new pension reform,” he stated.
The CEO said due to the successful implementation and completion of Phase I of the SECO Project and the positive impact the project had had on the Authority, and the industry at large, the Swiss Government initiated Phase two of the project to continue the support to the National Pensions Regulatory Authority in helping to ensure retirement income security for the Ghanaian worker.
The CEO of NPRA said the key objective of Phase II was expected to help improve the Authority’s internal capacity and external oversight to enforce compliance of service providers in the industry. This phase commenced in 2019, indicating that the second phase focused on delivering the RBS System for the industry.
“The deployment of RBS is to help streamline the supervisory and regulatory mandate of the Authority,” he stated.
The Deputy Head of Mission and Head of Cooperation for the Swiss Embassy in Accra, Dr Someone Haeberli, said her government was happy that all the objectives of the project had been achieved.
Dr Haeberli expressed the hope that the project would help the NPRA to better regulate players in the pensions industry.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE