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Bandaru Dattatreya
Bandaru Dattatreya

67 Lakh new EPF Accounts were opened in 5 months: Dattatreya

Hyderabad: Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya said that 67 lakh new Employees Provident Fund accounts were opened till date from January 2017. They include 3 lakh new accounts in Telangana State alone.

Addressing a press conference here on Sunday, Dattatreya said that the Employees Provident Fund Organization was having a corpus of Rs.11.50 lakh crore and 4.10 crore members. The PF funds that are being invested in Exchange Traded Funds (ETF) have earned 13.72% returns till date..

Only 5 to 10% of EPF funds are being invested in ETFs. Rs. 6,577 crores were invested in ETFs during 2015-16; Rs. 14,982 crores during 2016-17 and Rs. 22,858 crores invested till date during this financial year, Dattatreya said. Earlier the employees unions vehemently opposed the proposal of investing in ETF’s.

During the meeting of Central Board of Trustees of EPFO held at Pune on Saturday most of the employees unions welcomed the proposal. To compete with the developed nations, it is necessary to make such investments, he said.

Though it is risky, with the cautious management a dividend of Rs.234.86 crores accrued, Dattatreya informed. A team of officials will be visiting Brazil, Canada, USA and Singapore to study their investments made in ETF’s.

Linking of 50% of Universal Account Numbers (UAN) with Aadhar had been completed, the Minister said. Eight lakh enterprises and 10 crore employees were allotted Universal Account Numbers. Lot of changes will take place in Social Security in coming days, he added.

Several establishments are in favour of their contribution of 12 percent, they are not willing to reduce the contribution of employee from 12 percent to 10 percent.

During the last 3 years of NDA rule the confidence in the policies of the government has grown and there is favourable environment in the market, Dattatreya said.

The employees unions have proposed raising the minimum pension to Rs. 3,000 from the present Rs. 1,000 per month. It would be referred to an Experts’ Committee, the Union minister said.

Regional Provident Fund Commissioners Srikrishna, Sanjiva Rao, Chandrasekhar and Ravindra Kumar also participated in the meeting. (INN)

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