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Welfare allowances to be adjusted upwards in February
     The standard payment rates under the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) Scheme and the rates of Old Age Allowance (OAA) (including those payable under the Guangdong (GD) Scheme), Old Age Living Allowance (OALA) and Disability Allowance (DA) under the Social Security Allowance (SSA) Scheme will be increased next month (February), the Social Welfare Department (SWD) announced today (January 16).

     An SWD spokesman said, "Based on the established adjustment mechanism, i.e. according to the movement of the Social Security Assistance Index of Prices, the department earlier made a proposal to increase by 2.8 per cent the standard payment rates under the CSSA Scheme and the rates of OAA (including those payable under the GD Scheme), OALA and DA under the SSA Scheme (see Annex I). The proposal was subsequently approved by the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council and will take effect on February 1.

     "An additional expenditure of $1,031 million per year will be incurred for the adjustment, benefiting some 1.18 million recipients currently on CSSA or SSA.

     "According to the established mechanism, the maximum rates of the rent allowance under the CSSA Scheme will also be adjusted upwards based on the movement of the Consumer Price Index (A) rent index for private housing by 4.3 per cent on the same day (see Annex II)," the spokesman added.

     CSSA and SSA recipients who have enquiries may contact their respective social security field units or call the SWD hotline at 2343 2255.
Ends/Monday, January 16, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:32
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