The increasing mismanagement as well as the high cost of running the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) administration, which is hindering economic development and scaring away foreign investment, led members of almost every single business sector to demand government action. Among the complaints is the NSSF’s high subscription rate, collecting the equivalent of 38.5% of an employee’s salary, which inflates production and service costs. The fund is accused of siphoning money from the private sector to pump it back into the unproductive public sector by using some of its estimated $2bn-plus reserves and revenues to purchase TBs.
The president of the Association of the Lebanese Industrialists Jacques Saraf presented the government with a study recommending that a ceiling for business contributions be set at 23%. The study also focused on reducing the NSSF’s charges by one-third, bringing down a business’s family benefits contributions to 10% fro m 15% and health contributions from 12% to 8%. The cost of running the NSSF reportedly exceeds $50m annually, representing around 11% of total
contributions while the world average is 3%.