Thailand's Social Security Office (SSO) is cutting members’ contribution rates for the second time to ease their burden amid the coronavirus crisis, according to local English language daily Bangkok Post, quoting a top official from the SSO, which manages the Social Security Fund.
The move comes as the tourism-dependent country faces a deep recession this year.
The normal monthly contribution rate to the SSO is 10% of salaries, split equally between employers and employees.
In the first reduction from March through May, the employees’ share was slashed to 1% while the rate for employers was lowered to 4%. Contributions reverted to normal in June.
According to Pissamai Nitipaiboon, deputy secertary-general of the SSO, the SSO’s board sought, and received, Cabinet approval to reduce contributions for another three-month period starting in September, with employers and employees each contributing 2%, the Bangkok Post says in a report on August 6.
"The monthly contribution to the SSO by both employers and employees will be reduced to help them get through hardship caused by the pandemic," Ms. Pissamai says.
Thailand had 3,328 coronavirus cases, including 58 deaths, as at August 6.
The Southeast Asian country closed its borders to foreign tourists in April to curb the spread of the pandemic, dealing a heavy blow to its tourism sector, which accounts for 15% of Thailand’s gross domestic product.
The Bank of Thailand has forecast the economy to shrink a record 8.1% this year.
The SSO had US$41.89 billion of assets under management at the end of 2019, according to figures from the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute.