A welcome interest rate payout - Solomon Star News

A welcome interest rate payout

30 June 2016

THE National Provident Fund on Thursday announced a 10 per cent interest payout to its members.

This is for the financial year ending 30 June 2016.

NPF also paid similar interest rate in the last financial year.

This financial year’s interest pay-out comes on the back of a $276 million profit the fund made during the year.

Total member contributions to the fund now stand at $2.6 billion from the $2.3 billion it last recorded.

Thursday’s 10 per cent interest rate pronouncement Finance minister Snyder Rini made was well-received.

Although, this was half of what NPF paid out to members in 2013, this is well above rates the commercial banks are paying their customers.

The NPF management and staff must be commended for looking after members’ savings well and investing them in profitable commercial undertakings.

It is said the interest rates NPF has been paying its members in the last four years are the highest in the region.

Well done NPF!

But it is also time the NPF board and management consider other benefits to members.

Questions must now be asked about NPF’s proposed Investment Bank.

Is the plan still on the screen or has it been shelved?

NPF announced the plan in 2014.

The intention is to create a lending institution for its members to enable them purchase properties and venture into commercial undertaking.

If the plan is still on the table, members would be looking forward to the day it will come to pass.

Otherwise, consideration should be given to the housing scheme that was scrapped some years back.

Right now, although NPF’s housing arm, Home Finance, was there building and selling homes, it was beyond most members’ affordability.

Reinstating the former housing scheme would be a welcome initiative, too.