SSF, minimum wage to be strictly implemented: Minister Bista

Published On: August 26, 2019 08:13 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Aug 26: Minister of Labor, Employment and Social Security Gokarna Bista has said that Social Security Fund (SSF) scheme should be implemented in all big and small hotels, like everywhere else.

"All the hotels should pay Rs 13,450, the revised minimum wage set for the workers which has come into mandatory implementation from this Fiscal Year 2019/20," said Bista at a meeting with Hotel Association of Nepal (HAN) in Kathmandu on Sunday.

On the occasion, Shreejana Rana, president of HAN, said that though the bigger hotels did not have any issue implementing the SSF scheme, smaller hoteliers faced problems complying with the newly implemented regulation.

Hotel entrepreneurs also said that as they have already provided insurance schemes to their employees, the SSF's provision of medical treatment and accident coverage has created confusion among them.

Hotel owners and representatives on the occasion said that smaller hotels usually hired untrained staff, many of whom have no intention to stay in the country for long. This puts the small hotel operators in a difficult situation about effectively implementing the SSF scheme, they said.

"The government has always been over-ambitious while introducing new policies. In the case of SSF too, the government has done the same," said Sajan Shakya, secretary-general of HAN. He said that different arrangements regarding SSF should be made for the smaller hotels.

On the occasion, Rama Bhattarai, spokesperson of SSF, said that change in workplace or profession would not affect the benefits to the employees as they would be assigned a unique permanent social security number.

The SSF has different schemes including medical treatment, health and maternity protection, dependent family protection, old age protection, accident and disability protection, among others for the listed employees.

Stating that Nepal has been lagging behind in terms of respect and protection for employees, Bista said: "As this is a new thing for Nepal, it will take some time for employers to adapt to the SSF scheme."

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