One year ‘Older Fund’ payment reprieve for Thai senior citizens

Deputy Prime Minister and Commerce Minister, Jurin Laksanawisit announced the reprieve for senior citizens.

The National Older Persons Commission has resolved to suspend payments to its fund for one year, to aid low-income senior citizens.

Deputy Prime Minister and Commerce Minister, Jurin Laksanawisit, who chaired the commission’s latest meeting, says some 41,000 senior citizens who took out loans with the Older Fund to support their careers, will have their debt repayments suspended for a year, from April 1 this year to March 31 next year. Those who want to access the privilege must identify themselves to the fund, their provincial Social Development and Human Security offices or fill out an applicable form. One person providing collateral and two witnesses must sign, or be present at the reporting, with the eligible individual also required to present their identification card and a signed copy. The Deputy Prime Minister said he has ordered relevant offices to make the process convenient for those eligible.

On claims that the budget to provide welfare payments to 4.84 million eligible senior citizens is not sufficient, the commission acknowledged that the Department of Older Persons has requested the Bureau of the Budget ask the cabinet to allot 689 million baht.

The commission then approved a range of measures to accommodate the aging society covering the four dimensions of economics, the environment, health and society. Among the measures is a proposal to allow children under 15 years of age to register with the National Savings Fund and have their parents make payments on their behalf; for local administrations to be empowered to drive life quality enhancement efforts; improvements to care for professionals who are senior citizens, and for every district to be provided with a health rehabilitation center. All the measures are now pending cabinet approval. (NNT)