PFRDA expects addition of 1 crore new subscribers to APY in FY22

G Balachandar Chennai | Updated on October 05, 2021

Total enrolments have crossed 30 million already

Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) expects to add about one crore new subscribers to the government’s Atal Pension Yojana (APY) pension scheme this fiscal.

The Atal Pension Yojana, a guaranteed pension scheme of the Government of India and administered by PFRDA, continues to attract new enrolments supported by aggressive canvassing by intermediaries such as public sector banks, private sector banks, regional rural banks, small finance banks and co-operative banks among others on the back of growing awareness about future financial planning among the people.

“Total enrolments have crossed more than 30 million. In this fiscal alone, we have added a little over 4 million new customers to the APY scheme. Every day we see the numbers go up. On an average, we add 30,000–35,000 subscribers on a daily basis. Looking at the kind of growth we are getting, we feel we can add 10 million new customers under APY in 2021-22,” Supratim Bandyopadhyay, Chairperson, PFRDA, told BusinessLine.

Changing mindsets

The APY scheme has seen a growth of about 27 per cent as of September. Last year was also good and this year it was even better. In NPS, the growth is significantly higher at about 60 per cent, Bandyopadhyay said.

Also see: Improved revenue structure for NPS’ Point of Presence coming soon, says PFRDA Chief Bandyopadhyay

“Over the years, the mindset of people has changed positively towards pension schemes. Now people are really thinking about post-retirement and financial plans. I think the Covid-19 pandemic has also been a trigger for people to think seriously about the need to save for a rainy day. In the past couple of years, including the worst pandemic phase, our on-boarding rate didn’t drop. There was no negative rate in any month,” he added.

Unorganised sector

To a question on coverage for the unorganised sector, he said that with the APY scheme, which allows people in the age group of 18–40 years to join through the bank or post office branches through a savings bank account, a decent progress has been made to cover workers in the unorganised segment.

“It is an ongoing process. Because the number of people in the unorganised sector is so huge — about 45 crore. I think we have reached a little over 3 crore people. It may be low. But what gives us hope is that intermediaries such as banks, RRBs, SFBs have taken it as a mission to bring more people under APY coverage. They are doing a great job,” he added.

Different stratergies

He pointed out that while RRBs in Kerala were following different strategies to reach more people, Airtel Payment has done impressive work and has enrolled more than 1 million subscribers. Banks have engaged self-help groups and banking correspondents to reach out to more people.

Also see: Pension fund sponsors: PFRDA to open ‘on tap’ window next year, too

On the Amendment Bill, PFRDA was hoping that it would be considered during the winter session of the Parliament. It is with the Cabinet as discussions with all stakeholders are over and inputs have been incorporated.

We hope it will be taken up during the winter session, added Bandyopadhyay.

Published on October 04, 2021

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