Frequently asked questions
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The VNPF is a financial institution established under an act of parliament that provides an opportunity for workers in Vanuatu to ensure their own future financial security. Provident funds exist in the public and private sector all over the world. They are generally termed contributory schemes and are designed to encourage savings. Employers participate too by subsidising contributions made by employees. Your fund assists you in providing for the future security of yourself and your family. When, for instance, you retire or become permanently disabled, you can be confident you will receive an income. When you die, members or a member of your own family whom you nominate will be looked after. It is particularly important for the workers of Vanuatu to be members of such schemes, because the country does not have a government-funded social welfare system that takes care of people when they can no longer work.
All employees in Vanuatu between the ages of 14 and 55 must join the Fund. However, those whose monthly earnings are less than VT 3,000 as well as those who are specifically exempt need not contribute to the Fund.
Yes. Membership is compulsory for those employees who are between the ages of 14 and 55. If your monthly earnings is VT 3,000 or more and if you are not exempt from contributing, then you must join the Fund.
Yes you can as a voluntary contributor. In such case you must write to the Fund Board and seek approval.
It is written in an Act of Parliament - the VNPF Act, which was passed in 1986, to ensure a form of future security for all employees within Vanuatu.
The employer must ensure that every employee in his employ who is required to register with the Fund is given assistance to the employee in making the application to register with the Fund. Once the employee is registered and given a registration number by the Fund Board, the employer must remit the monthly contributions to the Fund quoting the registration number.
The VNPF Board administers the fund in accordance with the legislation. The Board is made up of six members who are representatives of Chamber of Commerce, employees (Public Service) and (National Workers Union) as well as the Government representative.
of the Board and the Fund are subject to audit by the Auditor General, who is required to provide a report to parliament. Further, in the event of any short fall in the Fund, the VNPF Act requires the government to make advances to the Fund.
Commencing from the inception of the Fund in 1987, shortfalls in the Fund has steadily increased and has risen to nearly Vatu 380 million as at the end of year 1999. These shortfalls arose as a result of a variety of reasons. Write off of imprudent investments, high operating costs, interests credited to members' accounts in the absence of profits are some of the causes that led to this shortfall.
The Board of Directors appointed under the revised provisions of the VNPF Act has taken several meaningful steps to turnaround the Fund. Reduction of the staffing of the Board by 50%, renting out of all available spaces, investment of part of the funds with Fund Managers, tight control over Board's expenditure and investments, obtaining assistance from overseas aid agencies to assist the Fund, are some of the steps taken by the Board to turnaround the Fund; these steps will eventually lead to the reduction of the accumulated shortfall.