Members contributed RM65bil in 2017, withdrew RM49bil
PETALING JAYA: The Employees Provident Fund’s (EPF) annual contributions rose by 6.38% to RM65.52bil in 2017 against a total withdrawal of RM49.40bil.
This resulted in net inflows of RM16.12bil for the year.
The EPF, which released its annual report yesterday, said there was also an 8.26% increase in total investment assets to RM791.48bil from RM731.11bil in 2016.
This was against total members’ contribution of RM768.51bil as at December 31, 2017.
Its CEO Datuk Shahril Ridza Ridzuan said it had been a good year overall, with a number of ‘firsts’ for the EPF.
“Most notably, it was the year we declared the first investment results and dividend rate for SimpananShariah,” he said.
SimpananShariah, the EPF’s fully syariah-compliant investment component, was launched in 2016.
He noted that the EPF had ended the year with the highest ever gross investment income since 1951 at RM53.14bil, with a gross return on investment of 7.3%, which was 18 basis points higher than in 2016.
“We have been making great strides in meeting our members’ needs as we have introduced more enhancements to our online channels.
“We are also very close to achieving a 100% take-up rate of our e-Caruman portal by employers, which has proven to be an essential online facility to submit employee contribution details and make payments on time,” he added.
Earlier, the EPF had declared a dividend rate of 6.9% for SimpananKonvensional, with a payout amounting to RM44.15bil, and 6.4% for SimpananShariah, with a payout amounting to RM3.98bil.
In total, the payout for 2017 amounted to RM48.13bil, representing an increase of 29.8% from the previous year.
The total number of withdrawal applications increased by 3.84% to 2.45 million, out of which 2.32 million were approved applications, amounting to RM49.4bil.
The EPF also recorded strong overall performance across all its asset classes, largely driven by investments in global equities which benefited from improved market conditions. As at December 31, 2017, the EPF’s total investment asset was RM791.48bil, with its equities portfolio, which makes up 42% the total investment assets, generating RM31.47bil for the year.
Of the RM53.14bil gross investment income generated for the year, over 40% was contributed by the EPF’s investments in global assets, despite constituting only 28% of its investment portfolio.
“We were very pleased with the 2017 performance of the EPF as a whole as not only were we able to record good dividends, we were also able to continually delight our members and help the employers in fulfilling their obligations,” Shahril said.
Moving forward, he said they anticipated continued market volatility and political uncertainty for the year ahead, in both the domestic and global fronts.
“Nonetheless, we look upon this as an opportunity for us to maintain our financial performance and enhance investment returns over the long run,” he said.
He said 2017 had seen the EPF put in place several initiatives to prepare itself for the future in meeting the changing demands of its members and employers as well as to create solid digital infrastructure.
“All these initiatives will enable us to effectively discharge our duty of safeguarding and preserving the value of our members’ savings and remain relevant to our members and employers,” he added.
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