The Social Security System (SSS) on Tuesday said it released P5.95 billion in pension loans in 2022, the highest annual disbursement for the Pension Loan Program (PLP) since it started in 2018.
In a statement, SSS president and CEO Rolando Macasaet said that pension loans released last year nearly doubled the P3.08 billion released in 2021.
“From January to December 2022, the SSS has disbursed a monthly average of P495.77 million pension loans benefiting 10,660 retiree-pensioners, which is 93% higher than its corresponding monthly average in 2021 of P257.01 million to 5,753 retiree-pensioners,” Macasaet said.
“We are delighted that we have assisted many of our retiree-pensioners for their short-term and immediate financial needs. We also prevent them from becoming victims of private lending institutions that charge high interest rates and require them to surrender their ATM cards as collateral,” he said.
The number of PLP applicants also increased amid the easing of COVID-19 mobility restrictions, which allowed retiree-pensioners to submit their pension loan applications.
“Our records show that a total of 127,920 retiree-pensioners availed from the PLP in 2022, which is 85% higher than the 69,036 retiree-pensioners who availed of the program in 2021,” Macasaet said.
The SSS chief said the pension fund launched PLP to assist retiree-pensioners in their immediate financial needs by offering a loan program with a low-interest rate of 10% per annum.
Macasaet said PLP also offers its borrowers flexible installment payment terms ranging from six to 24 months.
“We also ensure that the pensioners will still have a net take-home pension of at least 47.25% of their monthly pensions,” he said.
Qualified retiree-pensioners can avail themselves of a loan equivalent to three, six, nine, or 12 times their basic monthly pension plus the P1,000 additional benefit granted in 2017, but not exceeding P200,000. — DVM, GMA Integrated News