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Reuters file

The Employee's Provident Fund subscribers across the country are most likely to continue receiving the present EPF rates. The retirement fund body may keep interest rate unchanged at 8.65 percent on provident fund investments for its five crore members in 2017-18, news agency PTI reports quoting sources.

The Central Board of Trustees of EPFO (Employees Provident Fund Organization) would be meeting on February 21 to finalize the EPF rates for the fiscal year 2018. 

The pension fund body provided 8.65 percent for the fiscal year 2016-17, down from 8.8 percent in 2015-16 and 8.75 percent in 2013-14 and 2014-15.

Where other savings instruments like bank deposits, PPF (Public Provident Fund) are providing lower interest rates, if EPFO continues to pay the interest rate of 8.65 percent to the account holders for 2017-18 it will create a good impact.

To increase the take-home pay of new women workforce in Union Budget, the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced to reduce women employees' contribution to the EPF to 8 percent from 12 percent without affecting employer's contribution. The provision shall be applicable for first three years of joining the workforce. The budget also proposed that the government will pay employer's contribution of 12 percent of basic salary towards EPF in the first three years of employment.

Under EPF framework both the employer and employee contribute 12 percent of basic salary towards EPF. The employee's 12 percent contribution goes towards the EPF. The 8.33 percent out of the total 12 percent of the company's contribution goes to the EPS (Employees Pension Scheme) and the remaining 3.67 percent will be credited to the EPF account.