The Finance Ministry has approved the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation’s proposal to give 8.65% interest to its members for the fiscal year 2016-2017, PTI reported Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya as saying on Thursday. This has allayed workers’ fears that they would be paid less than even the 8.65% recommended by the organisation in December last year.

With the Finance Ministry’s approval, the interest amount can now be credited to more than four crore subscribers of the government’s provident fund scheme, Dattatreya was quoted as saying. “The Central Board of Trustees had decided to give 8.65%. Our ministry keeps on discussing with the Finance Ministry. We would have surplus of Rs 158 crore on providing 8.65%,” Dattatreya was reported as saying.

The Finance Ministry has been asking the Labour Ministry to rationalise the Employees’ Provident Fund interest rate in view of lowering of returns on various administered savings schemes like the Public Provident Fund.