A total of 10.7 million Egyptian women receive social insurance and pensions, representing 58% of the total pensioners in the country, Minister of Social Solidarity Nivine El-Kabbag has stated during her participation in the inauguration ceremony of the 6th Arab Pensions Conference in Sharm El-Sheikh.
The number of insured persons in Egypt reached 14 million, of whom women constitute 23%. Pensions have increased during the past three years by nearly 50%, with a plan to further raise minimum insurance and pension to EGP 916.
According to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics, the labour force increased during 2021 by 3.2%, and this was reflected in the increase of employed people, to reach about 27.2 million; 11.6 million people in urban areas and 15.5 million in rural areas. It is worth noting that more than 40% of the workforce in Egypt works in the informal sector, the minister said.
El-Kabbaj noted that about 78% of the people above retirement age receive pension, while only 19% of the unemployed receive unemployment compensation. Moreover, 34% of people with disabilities receive disability compensation, while only 35% of the official labour force receives compensation for work injuries at the global level.
Despite the advantages that have become available in insurance systems, the efficiency and effectiveness of pension systems has become a source of many fears, and these fears have increased during periods of economic crises, periods of economic reform, labour market shifts, and budget cuts.
She further pointed out that beneficiaries of the cash support programme “Takaful and Karama” (Solidarity and Dignity) has reached 5 million families, women representing 74% of the total beneficiaries.
El-Kabbaj recommended the expansion of insurance for non-covered groups, including the informal sector and expatriates, through maximising the investment of insurance funds. In addition, she called for developing pension plans to ward off the risks of global financial and economic crises, and currency fluctuations.
The minister also recommended strengthening social welfare funds in insurance and pension authorities. Moreover, she called for benefiting from the expertise of retirees in all fields, and integrating them into the labour market.