Member of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Zhu Zhengfu said on Monday that he was going to submit a proposal to the ongoing annual session of the CPPCC, calling for the establishment of a timely, nationwide, pertinent social security system. His proposal suggests distributing a nationwide universal social security card, the Guangzhou-based Information Times reported on Monday.
On Monday afternoon the First Session of the 11th National Committee of the CPPCC convened in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Zhu, also the vice chairman of the Guangdong Lawyers Association in the southern province, said that social security mechanisms vary widely in different regions because reforms have been carried out locally. Such disparities have brought about many difficulties in transferring social security benefits to single transient people. To date the current system has been unable to meet the demand of temporary labor forces caused by the booming economy.
The difficult task of cross-regional transfer management has imposed negative effects on the collection and dispersal of social security funds.
Additionally, the current social security system does not cover vast rural areas; another existing problem concerns the unbalanced rights and obligations regarding payment of funds and refunds.
To solve the above-mentioned problems, Zhu is calling upon appropriate state departments to work out a national applicable social security system as soon as possible.
He suggests establishing a "common card" system that would encompass all social security networks throughout China. This government system would copy the mobility of commercial insurance structures that have already been successfully established. For instance, with such a card obtained while employed in an urban area, migrant workers could continue to enjoy the benefits and services of social security after they have returned to rural areas.
And in fact a pilot program has already turned Zhu's suggestion into reality.
On Monday, the Shenzhen Municipal Bureau of Labor and Social Security distributed the first batch of Social Security Cards to 10 employees in Shenzhen.
The integrated circuit (IC) card, planned and designed under the universal supervision of the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, is applicable in all the fields concerning labor and social security affairs. It can be used throughout the country after the nationwide social security network is established, according to Guan Lingen, head of the Shenzhen Municipal Bureau of Labor and Social Security.
The city, an economic powerhouse for Guangdong Province, is proposing to hand out the card to every city resident with social insurance within three years.
Furthermore, Zhu Zhengfu pointed out that a special law directing the course of China's social security is still absent. This vacancy could hinder development, so Zhu has made an appeal to draft a Social Security Law as quickly as possible.
(China.org.cn by Zhang Tingting, March 4, 2008)