In the Philippines, the system in place for the provision of government services to workers and employees earning income within the country are embodied in four agencies: the Social Security System (SSS), the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), the Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF-Pag-ibig), and the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PHIC-PhilHealth). All four are government owned and controlled corporations that serve as conduits through which basic incentives from the Philippine government are made available for availment by registered members. Private enterprises must be registered as employers with the SSS, while Public offices or enterprises must be registered with the equivalent agency GSIS. All employees of both spheres of the workforce, Private and Public, are required to be registered either voluntarily or through the corporations or business concerns that employ them. The purpose of the SSS and the GSIS is to provide employees and their families, protection against disability, sickness, old age, and death, by means of insurance and pension privileges. The Pag-ibig Fund provides housing loans for its members utilizing payment plans which may be calibrated according to the employee’s capacity to pay. And the PhilHealth serves to provide affordable healthcare for members and their dependents.
Foreign employees are likewise required to be registered with these agencies, since they are covered by the scope of the law establishing these agencies. As such, they will be able to avail of the same benefits granted to Philippine citizens, provided that their contributions are made in a timely manner. Foreign employees may opt to be exempted from contributing to the different social security funds in the Philippines, however, these are subject to the provisions found in the different international agreements between the home country of the foreign employee and the Philippines, should any be in force and effect upon the date of employment.
The SSS, GSIS, The Pag-ibig Fund, and PhilHealth are crucial components in the Philippine corporate environment: they are the physical manifestations of the shared responsibility between employers and employees, which should form part of any company’s commitment to good corporate governance. The faithful payment of contributions due for every employee, local or expatriate, is a testament to your desire to maintain a company grounded on the principles of equity, and ensures a profitable future for both company and worker.