SINGAPORE (Dec 27): A Malaysian official on Tuesday clarified that Malaysians working abroad are eligible to make contributions to the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) via the 1Malaysia Retirement Savings Scheme (SP1M).

"The SP1M was introduced to encourage the self-employed and those without fixed income to contribute voluntarily based on their capability. This include Malaysians working abroad," Johor EPF branch Retirement Advisory Service (RAS) officer Faizal Abu Al-Ashari told Bernama.

Faizal says Malaysians below 55 years of age can register as EPF members to make savings until they reach retirement age, refuting the perception that those working abroad are not eligible.

While no fixed amount has been set, EPF members can make contributions of between RM50 and RM60,000 a year at any time. Like other contributors, they will receive annual dividends based on current rate.

Besides SP1M, Faizal says those eligible can make personal savings deposits via voluntary contribution.

According to the report, 65% of EPF members aged 54 years with savings of RM50,000 or less depleted their EPF savings within three to five years.

RAS provides advice and guidance to members for free, to raise awareness about the importance of retirement planning.