The National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA) has targeted to register about one million informal sector workers on its new three-tier pension scheme by close of 2017.

Mr Emmanuel Awuku Dagbanu, Corporate Affairs Manager of NPRA, disclosed this at an outreach programme in Bolgatanga to sensitise the general public on the new scheme which involves informal sector workers.

He said it was a nationwide programme that sought to register all informal sector workers on to the scheme to enable them have better retirement packages in the future.

He said an individual informal sector worker who did not belong to any group could register as such, whilst those with groups could also do same.

Mr Dagbanu said there were two basic accounts , the retirement account and personal savings account, the former he explained provided benefits on retirement and is being managed by the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), while the latter offered them the opportunity to readily take money to enhance their businesses or cater for their personal needs.

Stating the aim of the informal sector participation, he said “it is envisaged that the inclusion of workers in the informal sector in the new three- tier pension scheme will enable them save towards their old age or even as an invalid. This will improve their living standards and secure financial autonomy and independence in their old age.”

He said all pension funds would be kept by a custodian which were mainly a bank or a financial institution registered by the NPRA.

However, he said, the choice of custodians was determined by the individual or group but the NPRA could also provide guidance.

The Manager said there was a special provision for the three tier voluntary personal pension scheme of the new three tier pension scheme to cater for the peculiar needs of workers in the informal sector who constitute about 80% of the working class.

Mr Dagbanu called on all informal sector workers to get registered on to the scheme to secure a better future for themselves, and further disabused the minds of those mistaking the programme for a microfinance company.