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Pag-IBIG board OKs postponement of 2023 contribution hike

The Board of Trustees of the Home Development Mutual Fund, better known as the Pag-IBIG Fund, has officially approved the postponement of the agency’s contribution hike in 2023—deferring the scheduled increase in the monthly premium for the third time.

In a statement, Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development Secretary and chairman of the 11-member Pag-IBIG Fund Board of Trustees Jose Rizalino Acuzar said the fund’s board unanimously approved the recommendation of the Pag-IBIG Fund management to defer the hike in the monthly contributions of its members in 2023 and move the implementation by one year to January 2024.

The Board of Trustees’ move affirmed the pronouncements made by the agency earlier this year. 

Acuzar said the deferment also applies to the share of employers.

In 2019, Pag-IBIG Fund obtained the concurrence of stakeholders to implement a planned contribution increase in 2021, from P100 to P150 for members.

The contribution hike was continually deferred in light of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on both businesses and workers.

Pag-IBIG Fund’s rates have remained unchanged since 1986.

The current minimum monthly contribution of Pag-IBIG members is at P200, which is equally shared by employers and employees.

“We recognize that many of our members and employers are still in the midst of recovering from financial challenges arising from the effects of the pandemic on the economy,” Acuzar said.

“After consulting with our stakeholders, we have officially approved the deferment of the increase of Pag-IBIG members’ monthly contributions for another year. This is in line with the call of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to alleviate the financial burden of our fellow Filipinos due to the prevailing socio-economic challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

In deferring the contribution rate hike for the third consecutive year, Pag-IBIG Fund said it considered the plight of both members and the business community led by the Employers’ Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) as it recognized the adverse effects of the pandemic.

For her part, Pag-IBIG Fund chief executive officer Marilene Acosta said the agency’s robust fiscal standing and strong collections driven by members opting to save more under the agency’s regular and MP2 Savings programs should allow it to address the growing loan demand of members even without a contribution rate increase this year.

“Our strong financial position shall allow us to again postpone the increase in our contribution rates for a year. We are happy to report that even without any increase in our rates, we were able to post record-highs in 2022 with our membership savings collections reaching nearly P80 billion, loan payment collections amounting to P127.42 billion, short-term loan releases at 57.69 billion and home loan takeout amounting to P117.85 billion,” Acosta said.

“And, with the continued trust and support of our members, the business community and housing industry partners, we look forward to achieving another banner year for Pag-IBIG Fund in 2023 despite not increasing our contribution rates for the 37th consecutive year,” she said. — BM/RSJ, GMA Integrated News