Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) Current Affairs - 2020

GoI launches “SPICe+” to improve Ease of Doing Business in the country

On February 24, 2020, the Government of India launched SPICe+, a web form that integrates 10 services of various ministries and departments. This will help boost Ease of Doing Business in India. It was launched by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

India ranked 63rd in Ease of Doing Business ranking published by World Bank.

Highlights

The Simplified Proforma for Incorporating Company Electronically Plus provides 10 services thereby saving time, cost for starting a business in India. It offers 10 services namely DIN allotment, issue of PAN, TAN, EPFO. ESIC registration, opening bank account for a company, allotment of GSTIN, issue of Profession Tax, etc.

The service will help to improve Ease of Doing Business in the country, especially for a startup.

Ease of Doing Business Ranking

In 2019, the World Bank placed India at the 136th rank for Ease of Starting Business. It was provided the 154th and 115th ranks for paying taxes and enforcing contracts respectively. Therefore, it is essential for initiatives such as SPICe+ to improve India’s position globally.

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Facts Box: Drafts Security Code

The Union Government recently circulated the Draft Security Code that integrates existing labor laws and provides new initiatives to provide social security to workers of unorganized sector, insurance and helath benefits to gig workers. It includes drivers of private vehicle hiring services as well. The code also aims at corporatization of organizations like ESIC And EPFO.

Key Features of the Code

Insurance, life cover, PF for unorganized sector employees

  • According to the code, the Central Government shall formulate welfare schemes for the workers of unorganized sector from time to time on matters relating to life, disability, maternal benefits, health, old age protection.
  • While framing schemes the government will look out for key initiative relating to the workers’ housing, educational scheme for their children, funeral assistance, old age assistance, etc

Corporatization of ESIC and EPFO

The world body for the EPFO And ESIC related world bodies have been added in the scheme. This will bring an end to the autonomous body status of organizations that are responsible for pension, retirement and insurance. It aims to make the EPFO a more structured national body.

Gig Worker

The Gig workers will get insurance, health and maternal benefits under the security code.

Maternal Benefits

Every woman worker under the act will be entitled to payment of maternity benefit. The payment is to be at the rate of average daily wage for the period of her actual absence.

Merging existing labor laws

The Code on Social Security will merge the following laws

  • Employees Compensation Act, 1923
  • Employees Insurance Act, 1948
  • Maternal Benefit Act, 1961
  • Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952
  • Cine Workers Welfare Fund Act, 1981
  • Unorganized Workers’ Social Security act, 2008

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