Who We Are
The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) is a statutory pension fund that provides pension and related benefits to civil servants, and employees of participating employers in Namibia.
The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) was established at the end of 1989, with the purpose of providing pension and other related benefits to civil servants as well as employees of institutions established by Acts of Parliament such as state-owned enterprises and mission hospitals in Namibia.
As a professionally managed pension fund, GIPF continues to strive to be a leading pension fund and a model corporate citizen in Namibia.
GIPF is also one of the few fully funded pension funds in Africa that have built up enough funds to cover its liabilities.
Defined Benefit Pension Fund
GIPF is a defined benefits pension fund that provides guaranteed pension benefits to its members. This means that should liabilities of GIPF exceed its assets, (e.g. bad performance of the markets), the employer undertakes to cover the shortfall. The benefits are defined in terms of the Rules of the Fund and most of the benefits are calculated based on final average salary and years of service, which is the number of years that the member was employed by the Government or member institution and contributed to the Fund.
The scheme provides guaranteed benefits to members no matter what happens in the stock market, how long an employee lives after retirement, or whether he or she becomes disabled and unable to work. Besides the above benefits, GIPF provides funeral benefits to its members at no cost.
For any business, attraction and subsequent retention of key personnel is of strategic importance. An employee who fails to provide a competitive and comprehensive range of attractive staff benefits will soon lose key employees. GIPF provides excellent benefits to its members, which is one of the key incentives for civil servants to stay in public service. Many employees who could earn a higher salary in the private sector remain in public service because of the guaranteed pension benefits that the Fund provides upon retirement.
To offset the increasing cost of living, the pensioners have been receiving pension increases (higher than the average inflation rate) of about 10% per annum for the last 10 years.
Saving enough money is one of the most important and often difficult thing to do. Fortunately, access to retirement benefits for GIPF members is not tied to the employees’ ability to save because contributions to the fund is compulsory thus compelling employees to save indirectly. The Fund therefore makes saving easier for employees who, if left to their own devices might make inadequate retirement provision for themselves.
Our Core Values
We embrace our corporate values, and working together as a team, are transparent and accountable in how we operate. We share these values through our member-centric culture and delivering the highest quality of service.
We believe that teams achieve more than individuals. We therefore undertake to work together as a team in support of one another in pursuit of our vision.
We will strive to deliver the highest quality of service (Right, Fast and Humane) to all our stakeholders in an innovative, professional and respectful manner.
We will always be honest, fair, transparent and trustworthy in everything we do.
- GIPF celebrates its 30th anniversary on 1 October 2020
- Review of the GIPF Strategic Plan 2018 – 2023
- GIPF rated at the top-level (level 1) of NAMFISA’s supervisory level
- Fund assets have grown to N$108.5 billion, making up 61.7% of the pension fund industry in Namibia
- N$8.5 million invested in member education and other activities
- Active member count 101,762
- Decentralising the payment of claims to the respective regional offices countrywide
- Biggest investor in Namibia through listed and unlisted assets to the value of N$42.3 billion
- Staff complement grew to 246 (permanent staff)
- Five-story building (head office, Windhoek)
- Eleven Regional offices
- N$5.7 million invested in training and development
- The Fund performed its first compliance maturity assessment
- Substantial reduction in the turnaround times for processing claims by active members
- N$5.6 billion committed to unlisted investments
- N$117.5 million invested in renewable energy projects
- Opening of Eenhana regional office, Ohangwena Region
- Development and approval of the GIPF Strategic Plan 2018 – 2023.
- David Nuyoma re-appointed as CEO, effective from 1 January 2018 until 2022
- Fund assets stood at N$110.4 billion
- Business Process Improvement project launched
- Introduced the five-year Asset Management Incubation Programme with six asset managers appointed
- Opening of the Outapi regional office, Omusati Region
Commitment made to move towards integrated reporting. Opening of the Katutura B1 City satellite office, Windhoek.
Mr Goms Menettѐappointed Chairperson by the Board of Trustees on 21 June 2016 . The Fund introduced the first Compliance and Legal Risk Management Policies.
Treasury department established to manage the Fund’s assets.
Mr David Nuyoma appointed as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Principal Officer by the Board, effective from 1 January 2013 until 1 January 2018.
Biometric verification tool introduced to verify the existence of annuitants
The establishment of the GIPF Administrators (Pty) Ltd
In line with the changes within the retirement funds industry, characterized by increased consumerism, high costs to the employer, tighter regulatory control of retirement funds and the poor service delivery of the historical life insurer, the Board of Trustees took a strategic decision and registered a professional retirement administration company in 1999 that would administer both defined benefits and defined contributions benefits funds. This was done to give institutional customers and members flexibility and choice in investment options.
By 1999, the assets of GIPF were N$6 894 084 billion.
The Namibianization process
In 1996, the Board of Trustees of GIPF resolved that operations of GIPF should be conducted and controlled by Namibians. They decided that the administration of the fund should be done in -house in order to render better service to members. The Board of Trustees invested the assets of GIPF in a mix of Namibian, South African and international equities, bonds, properties and cash. With the assistance of bullish markets that prevailed at that time, the financial position of the fund improved extremely. This is why the civil servants who transferred their full pensions to the GIPF are today much better off than their counterparts who privatized their pensions.
By 1996 the assets of GIPF were N$4 398 896 billion.
The first GIPF rules were brought into force.
Parliament passed the Pension Matters of Government Institutions Amendment Act, 1990 (Act 5 of 1990) which prohibited members from transferring out their accrued benefits to private funds and insurance companies.
Fund assets: N$844 million Staff complement: Two Single floor office, Windhoek
Namibia has been governed as part of South Africa before 1990 resulting in the two countries sharing a similar history in respect of the evolvement of retirement funds.
Historically and in line with the apartheid laws, the South African Government made provision for retirement benefits for white civil servants excluding non-white civil servants. In 1969, the South African Government amended the Pensions Funds Act to make provision for separate pension benefits designed for non -white civil servants of which the structure of benefits were inferior compared to the ones for white civil servants. The Act was followed by the Blacks Authoritie’ Service Pension Act of 1971 that made provision for fragmented pension benefits exclusively for black civil servants working for various Bantustans.
As the political pressure was mounting against the South African Government, efforts were made to consolidate the previous separate pension arrangements through the Temporary Employees Pension Fund Act in 1979, followed again by the General Pensions Act that provided for equal pension benefits for all civil servants, blacks and whites. This Act was further repealed to make way for the Statutory Pension Funds Act of 1980.
Immediately before Namibia’s independence, a new pension fund called Government Institutions Pension Fund was established in 1989 to provide pension benefits to Namibian civil servants. Sanlam, a life insurance company, was appointed to administer the Fund.
There were suspicions that the incoming Government might take the members’ pension assets for their own use. The Administrator General of South West Africa for example stated that Resolution 435 could not be relied on to safeguard pension benefits of civil servants. The members and pensioners were thus given the option to either.
transfer their service period, full actuarial reserve and share of surplus to the Namibian domiciled Government Institutions Pension Fund or
privatize their pensions by transferring their actuarial reserve plus share of surplus to any other retirement annuity fund.
For members who selected the latter option, their “past service” was not transferred to the new Fund. Those who opted for the first option had to join GIPF in respect of their future service.