China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security issued guidance (Announcement No. 7) regarding the administration of Chinese social security contributions during the period of prevention and containment of the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The Standing Committee of the State Council on 18 February 2020 further decided to reduce or waive employer obligations on social security contributions for a specified period of time to ease the burden of enterprises during this difficult time.
The guidance under Announcement No. 7 provides measures for local social security bureaus and allows enterprises to make catch-up employer social security contributions within a period of three months following containment of COVID-19 outbreak without adversely affecting employee rights to social security benefits.
The Standing Committee of the State Council decided to reduce or waive employer contributions to pension, unemployment, and work-related injury insurance schemes for enterprises in Hubei and other provinces and cities. In addition, certain local authorities have introduced policies in accordance with outbreak situation in the respective city/province in order to support local enterprises during the outbreak. These included deferring adjustments to social security contribution base, adjusting employer contribution rate for certain social security plans, extending payment of employer social security contributions, and relaxing the restrictions on applying for refunds of unemployment insurance.
Announcement No. 7 along with the February 2020 decision of the Standing Committee of the State Council on administration of social security contributions emphasize relief measures during the COVID-19 outbreak and to alleviate the burden on enterprises.
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