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  • Daily contribution to retirement mutual-aid scheme for construction workers to be raised to 5,000 won
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  • Dec. 21, 2017

     

    At a meeting with outstanding construction technicians held at the Seoul Regional Employment and Labor Office on December 21st (Thu.) Employment and Labor Minister Kim Young-joo announced a plan to raise the daily contribution amount that should be paid into the retirement mutual-aid scheme for construction workers to 5,000 won from January 1st, 2018.

     

    The retirement mutual-aid scheme for construction workers has been implemented since 1998 to provide old-age livelihood security for construction workers who cannot benefit from the statutory retirement pay system.

     

    If a construction business owner has paid a contribution of 4,200 won per day into the retirement mutual-aid scheme for the number of days worked by his/her daily construction worker and the daily construction worker has satisfied certain requirements, the worker is able to receive retirement mutual-aid benefits when he/she retires from the construction industry.

     

    The daily amount of retirement mutual-aid benefits which determines the level of retirement mutual-aid benefits to be paid has remained stationary for about ten years since it was last raised to 4,000 won in 2008, so it has been pointed out that the scheme provides a rather insufficient level of income security as an old-age livelihood safety net.

     

    This point was also raised several times at field labor offices operated by MOEL last September.

     

    The increase is the one Minister Kim promised during her visit to the Construction Workers Mutual Aid Association on November 30th, and it was also reflected in the 'measures to improve the quality of jobs in the construction industry' announced on December 12th.

     

    Hence, MOEL decided to raise the daily contribution amount to 5,000 won after consultation with relevant government agencies, including the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT). The higher daily contribution amount will apply to construction contracts awarded on or after January 1st, 2018.

     

    <Trends in daily amount of retirement mutual-aid contributions>                
                                                                                               (KRW)

     

    1998~2006

    2007

    2008~2012

    2012~2017

    2018

    Daily contribution amount

    2,100

    3,100

    4,100

    4,200

    5,000

    - Retirement mutual-aid benefit

    2,000

    3,000

    4,000

    4,000

    4,800

    - Surcharge

    100

    100

    100

    200

    200

     

    The Minister said, "MOEL has decided to raise the daily contribution amount to the highest level allowed under the current law."

     

    On that day (Dec. 21st), the board of directors of the Construction Workers Mutual Aid Association passed the proposal to raise the daily contribution amount. In light of this, MOEL will announce the increase as soon as possible after it is approved by the Minister of Employment and Labor.

     

    Moreover, MOEL will make every effort to enable more construction workers to benefit from the retirement mutual-aid scheme. For example, it will expand the scope of construction projects that should be covered by the mutual-aid scheme*, introduce an electronic card system to prevent failure to report any day worked by construction workers to the mutual aid association, and relax the eligibility requirements for receipt of retirement mutual-aid benefits*. (The relevant amendment to the Act on the Employment Improvement, etc., of Construction Workers is pending before the National Assembly.)

     

    * (Current) any public construction project worth 300 million won or more and private construction project worth 10 billion won or more ☞ (revised) any public construction project worth 100 million won or more and private construction project worth 5 billion won or more

     

    ** (Current) Construction workers with a contribution period of at least 252 days can receive benefits when they retire from the construction industry, die or reach the age of 60. ☞ (revised) Even those with a contribution period of less than 252 days can receive benefits when they die or reach the age of 65.

     

    Meanwhile, MOEL held a 'meeting with outstanding construction technicians' on that day. The meeting was intended to express appreciation to construction technicians who had played a pivotal role in developing the construction industry for their hard work.

     

    * Participants: six people who won government awards on the occasion of Construction Technicians' Day 2017

     

    Participating technicians spoke candidly about the difficulties faced by workers at construction sites and measures to promote construction workers' employment and welfare as seen through the eyes of construction workers.

     

    The Minister emphasized, "The Moon Jae-in government's determination to improve the quality of jobs in the construction industry is firmer than ever."

     

    She also said, "The government will do its utmost to create an environment that enables construction workers to work without worrying about employment, wages, safety and life in old age."

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