Publication: Creation of a Reformed Pension System for Civil Servants in Timor-Leste

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World Bank
In February 2011, the government of Timor-Leste (GoTL) enacted a law creating a pension system for civil servants. However, the government now wants to repeal and replace this pension law as it deems it too broad in scope, coverage and cost, and it contains several non-standard design features. In its place, the GoTL wants to consider creating a reformed permanent civil service pension program covering all civil servants. Within a few years thereafter, the government also wants to implement a national social security system. This system will cover formal sector workers, and it is likely civil servants will also participate. Consequently, civil servants may get benefits from both the national social security system and the civil service pension system. Timor-Leste has many civil servants with long service both before and after independence. The reformed pension system for civil servants will give the government a method of honorably allowing its elderly civil servants to exit the work force. At this time, the primary method of caring for elderly civil servants is to continue salary payments. This is because there is no mandatory retirement age for civil servants and the government does not yet have effective procedures for compelling older workers to retire when their productivity level declines. Consequently, the government has informed us that the civil service pension is unlikely to pay benefits to any civil servants until such time as these two issues are resolved. The government estimates this will take five years (until 2018). Until that time, elderly civil servants will continue to receive their salary and will not receive a pension from the reformed civil service pension program.
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World Bank. 2014. Creation of a Reformed Pension System for Civil Servants in Timor-Leste. © Washington, DC. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.
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