Social Security in Mexico City

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Mexico's social security agencies are financed through contributions from members, employers, and the government. In the mid-1990s, contributions averaged around 25 percent of members' salaries. Although informal-sector workers may subscribe to the IMSS (The Mexican Institute of Social Security or Instituto Mexicano de Seguro Social) they are effectively prevented from doing so because they must pay not only their own share but that of their employers as well. Members are eligible for a wide array of benefits including pension, disability, and maternity coverage. A variety of other services are also available to all Mexicans, including vacation centres, funeral parlours, and day-care centres. Approximately 1.5 million Mexicans received monthly pensions in the mid-1990s, a higher figure than in previous decades, reflecting gains in average life expectancy.

The system has many problems including rising administrative expenditures, redundant physical plants, the high costs of complex medical technology for IMSS's approximately 1,700 hospitals, and continual transfers of pension funds to cover deficits in disability and maternity programs. In addition, Mexicans can establish privately operated individual retirement accounts.

One of the key challenges the country is encountering is meeting the needs of a rapidly expanding and urbanizing population while continuing to improve living conditions for the many disadvantaged segments of its society.

Update 27/08/2010


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