If you are in the kyosai nenkin system, you should read this
From October this year, Kyosai Nenkin (共済年金) will disappear, and all public servants will be moved into the Kosei Nenkin (厚生年金) system. Kosei Nenkin is also known as 'salariman nenkin' and is the system that regular company workers tend to join.
There is no paperwork to complete and you don't have to do anything. The process is supposed to be automatic and seamless. Hee hee hee.
This is a fait accompli. It was decided by the Diet a couple of years ago (I coincidentally heard a bit of one of the debates at the time in the car) and to all extents and purposes has already happened, so this is not actionable information.
My impression is that Kyosai Nenkin was better than Kosei Nenkin, as it included a supplementary payment (so contributions were higher) and was ring-fenced, so could be treated differently to the general pension fund. No longer.
However, there are two good points to come out of this. They don't outweigh the bad, but I'll take the silver lining wherever I can find it :)
1. Once you are moved into Kosei Nenkin you should be able to log into the Nenkin website and see all your contributions, generate simulations of how much pension you might expect to receive, etc. If I do that now I can see my previous Kosei Nenkin and Kokumin Nenkin contributions, but the months I have been in the Kyosai system are blank. Being able to check everything is correct and get accurate information about projected pension payments will be very useful.
2. Perhaps more excitingly, once you are paying into the Kosei Nenkin system, and provided your employer does not provide a supplementary pension (mine isn't planning to), you will be able to open a J401k (see link on the site menu for more info). This is very good news, and I will be applying as soon as possible after the changeover.
It took me four phone calls to find out if I would be eligible for a J401k (I called my HR department, the Kyosai office in Tokyo, the Nenkin hotline, and finally the J401k hotline). As far as anyone could tell me, it looks good.
I'll post again once I manage to get an account open. Stay tuned!