The Government today (December 22) published a consultation paper to solicit public views on retirement protection. The Business and Professionals Alliance for Hong Kong (BPA) stands in solidarity with Hong Kong’s business and industrial sectors, as well as small and medium enterprises (SMEs), in objecting strenuously to the abolition of Mandatory Provident Fund’s (MPF) offset mechanism.
BPA agrees that there should be a comprehensive review of Hong Kong’s retirement protection system and will submit its comments after carefully studying the consultation paper.
BPA is of the view that any form of retirement protection should be equitable and sustainable in terms of funding. These include taking into account affordability by SMEs and avoiding reliance on employers to “foot the bill”.
BPA has been in close consultation with the business community over the last three months and has established a platform for exchanging views with various chambers and trade associations in Hong Kong. A symposium on the MPF offset mechanism held on December 10, 2015, drew more than 300 participants from across a wide spectrum of businesses in Hong Kong, as well as academia. The symposium provided participants with a better understanding of the implications of an abolition of the MPF offset mechanism issue, which businesses unanimously opposed.
BPA notes that Hong Kong’s economic outlook was fraught with uncertainties and downside risks due to continuing weakness in global markets. If the MPF offset mechanism was abolished, this could lead to a further deterioration of the business environment as operating costs rise. This could result in widespread bankruptcies and massive layoffs that would have the collective effect of eroding Hong Kong’s competitiveness.