Message from the Executive Director of NIS on the occasion of the 33rd anniversary of the NIS
by STEWART K HAYNES Executive Director, National Insurance Services
THE BOARD, Management and staff of the National Insurance Services salute the Government and people of SVG for their sterling support to the organization over its 33 years of providing sustainable social protection to the nation.
On the occasion of our 33rd anniversary, we recognise and reflect on our building blocks, who are principally the past, present and future employers and employees of this blessed country. We remain humble to diagnose that our achievements and accomplishments are built on the bedrock of yesterday’s, today’s and tomorrow’s hardworking and productive labour force. We are able to celebrate this significant milestone because the Government creates an enabling environment for growth of the system and the many-sided contributions from the beneficiaries and insured persons.
At its 33rd anniversary, the NIS celebrates its journey of significant developments and socio-economic transformative actions which include but are not limited to the following; 1. Accumulation of an asset base which constitutes approximately 25% of the national gross 2. The architecture of a resilient investment portfolio that is sufficiently diversified across countries, economic sectors and issuers.
3. Social protection to approximately 47% of the population.
4. Provision of a dignified and comprehensive benefit package that sufficiently provides protection from birth to death against social and economic distress as a consequence of life cycle risks of sickness, employment injury, invalidity, maternity, death and old age.
5. The only reliable, predictable and sustainable source of retirement income for approximately 85% of our older persons in SVG.
6. A benefit expenditure base of approximately $70 million which represent approximately 2% of GDP 7. Promotion of social and economic utility by its investments in education, skills development, health, housing and poverty alleviation measures.
8. Contribution to employment creation by its sizeable investments in the local economy through loans, bonds, equities and deposits.
9. Provision of people- centred services through fashioning products and services that reflect the needs of its customers and extending its services to the Grenadines and
rural areas of St.Vincent.
10. Major provider of labour market statistics to various local and international stakeholders.
These achievements are being realised and accomplished amidst major economic, labour market and demographic challenges which threaten the contribution and financing bases and adequacy of benefits of our social security system. Of material concern is the demographic shift caused by population ageing. Three factors explain this phenomenon; the declining fertility, the increasing life expectancy and past variations in birth and death rates which is termed as baby boomers. However, the intelligent blend of people skills and technology allow the organisation to be resilient and responsive to these exogenous challenges.
Notwithstanding the increasing intensity of the timing, scale, pace and magnitude of the challenges confronting social security system, we look forward to the future with great hope and optimism. Our levers of action to enhance financial sustainability, benefit adequacy and improve administrative efficiency would pivot around parametric reform, improved coordination with key stakeholders, integration of ICT in core operations, broadened coverage to self-employed and informal sectors and investments in the employment and empowerment of our people.
As we grow and continue to touch and transform lives, we promise to remain rooted and grounded in our vision and mission. Protecting people will always remain our focus as we strive to promote social and economic development in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.