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As the population in Sri Lanka ages, there will be increasing demand for better systems of old-age income security. These pressures will be exarcerbated by the rapid future ageing of Sri Lanka's population. Given the history of social policy in Sri Lanka and its democratic traditions, it is likely that Sri Lanka will move eventually towards expanding the coverage of pension schemes in the country. However, how this can be done and be afforded presents enormous challenges and questions. Currently, less than half of the working-age population is covered by any formal arrangements, and most of the existing schemes have been shown by IHP research to be either inadequate or unsustainable. Despite this there is growing poltiical pressure to expand existing systems, and no national consensus on the best way forward.
Current research programme
IHP's research on pensions focuses on (i) assessing the performance of current systems of old-age income security in Sri Lanka, including pensions, and examining their economic viability, (ii) exploring alternative and options for reforming current systems and introducing new ones, with an emphasis on learning from global trends and experience, and (iii) introducing a note of realism and evidence into a policy area that is often marked by ideology and unrealistic expectations.
Our current research includes:
- Regular appraisals and tracking of the performance of existing pension schemes in the country.
- Work on modelling the financial costs of existing schemes.
- Exploring options for expanding meaingfullpensions coverage to uncovered groups in an affordable and sustainable manner.