KUALA LUMPUR, 12 June 2018: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) reported an 80.58 per cent increase in the number of usage of its flagship electronic service i-Akaun in its first quarter (Q1 2018) Operations results to 11.12 million from 6.16 million in the corresponding period last year.
As at end March 2018, a total of 5.06 million members had registered with i-Akaun, representing 36.38 per cent of the total EPF members. The EPF also recorded a marked increase in the number of downloads of the ‘EPF i-Akaun’ mobile app to 2.36 million since its roll-out in 2014. More enhancements were introduced to the i-Akaun in order for members to receive real-time updates on EPF products and services as well as other key announcements.
EPF Deputy Chief Executive Officer (Operations) Dato Mohd Naim Daruwish said, “The EPF has been introducing several more enhancements to its service delivery channels as its membership and employer database continue to increase every quarter. We have especially been focusing on the i-Akaun facility as it is a primary gateway for members and employers to monitor their account and access other online services such as e-Pengeluaran and e-Caruman.
“Aside from that, we are very pleased to see a marked increase in the usage of i-Akaun by employers registered with the EPF. The facility, which is also available in mobile app version, has helped employers tremendously in the submission of their employees’ contribution details and make payments online. Employers are also able to minimise errors and ensure that they do not lapse in remitting their monthly contribution payments every month.”
As at end March 2018, a total of 433,691 or 99.95 per cent of employers used the EPF’s electronic medium, including e-Caruman, to submit their employees’ contribution details, whereas 333,550 or 77.22 per cent used the e-Payment system to make contribution payments.
During the quarter under review, visitor traffic to the myEPF portal increased 29.11 per cent to 8.66 million from 6.71 million in the corresponding quarter last year. Usage of EPF Kiosks reported a decline of 11.22 per cent from 3.81 million in Q1 2017 to 3.38 million in Q1 2018.
The total number of visits to the EPF counters declined 12.88 per cent from 929,729 in Q1 2017 to 810,022 in Q1 2018, thus indicating members’ preference to use the online platform to interact with the EPF. Phone calls received by the EPF Contact Management Centre, meanwhile, increased 15.43 per cent to 425,873 as at Q1 2018.
As at end March 2018, the number of EPF members totaled 13.91 million, of whom 7.18 million were active contributors with 148,212 newly registered members. The quarter under review also saw an 11.90 per cent rise in the number of newly registered employers to 18,180 from 16,246 in Q1 2017, adding to the total number of registered employers to 498,097 as at end March 2018.
In tandem with the increase in membership, the EPF recorded a 10.83 per cent increase in contributions received in the first quarter to RM19.24 billion from RM17.36 billion recorded in the same quarter last year, bringing the total accumulated members’ contributions to RM774.48 billion.
The total number of approved applications for all withdrawals in Q1 2018 increased 9.52 per cent to 644,715 from 588,659 in Q1 2017. This involved the total amount withdrawn in Q1 2018 of RM13.42 billion, compared with RM14.10 billion in the corresponding period in 2017.
The number of members who prefer to make flexible withdrawals have also increased compared to those who withdraw their savings lump sum. In Q1 2018, the total number of approved applications for Age 55 Flexible Withdrawal increased 21.77 per cent to 68,101 from 55,925 approved applications in the corresponding quarter in 2017. The amount withdrawn under the scheme was RM3.06 billion, compared with RM2.21 billion in Q1 2017 (Q4 2017: 44,554; RM1.80 billion).
Dato’ Mohd Naim said the increase in the number of applications for flexible withdrawal was attributed to the heightened awareness among members to stagger the withdrawal of their savings, so the remaining balance in their account could continue to earn dividends.
“This way, members would be able to stretch their savings further and only withdraw the necessary amount needed to suit their retirement lifestyle,” he said, adding that members are strongly encouraged to seek advice from EPF’s Retirement Advisory Service officers at its 28 branches nationwide on their options prior to withdrawing their savings.
For more information on EPF products and services, members can refer to the EPF website at new.epf.gov.my, or contact the EPF Contact Management Centre (CMC) at 03-89226000 or visit any of the 67 EPF branches nationwide. To register for i-Akaun, members need to obtain an activation code via EPF Kiosks, EPF counters or by calling CMC from 8am to 6pm on weekdays. Members are also encouraged to download the i-Akaun mobile application for free via Google Play or Apple App Store.
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is Malaysia’s premier retirement savings fund to help its members achieve adequate savings for a comfortable retirement. This is in line with EPF’s vision to help members achieve a better future and the mission to safeguard members’ savings and deliver excellent services. The EPF has evolved significantly from transaction-centric to a professional fund management organisation with a strong focus on retirement security. The EPF is guided by a robust and professional governance framework when making investment decisions. It continues to play a catalytic role in the nation’s economic growth and seeks to cultivate a savings and investment culture among its members to improve the country’s financial literacy level.