By THE NATION
A SSO source said on Sunday (April 12) that the Social Security Fund has earmarked Bt180 billion as its “unemployment fund” to be handed out to workers who have become unemployed due to variety of reasons.
“This portion is only a small part of the SSO’s total investment fund of Bt2 trillion, which should be enough to cover other benefits under the Social Security Act,” said the source.
The source also said that in the past few years the unemployment fund has been rarely used, since the jobless rate was relatively low, adding that “the SSO has managed this portion of the fund and kept it ready all these years to prepare for an emergency situation such as the Covid-19 outbreak”.
In case the Covid-19 situation escalates and additional money is required, the SSO will sell short-term debentures issued by the government, which make up about 67 per cent, or Bt1.4 trillion, of total investment.
Employees whose businesses were forced to shut by order of the government will be compensated under Section 33 of theSocial Security Act, with 62 per cent of daily wages based on a maximum monthly salary of Bt15,000 for a maximum period of 90 days.
The Labour Ministry said last week that it was seeking Cabinet approval to grant similar benefits to those whose businesses were not ordered to shut but affected by the Covid-19 crisis. The Cabinet is expected to announce its decision this week.