Subscribers of National Pension System (NPS ) regulated by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) earned double-digit returns of as much as 14.19 per cent during 2012-13.

The pension scheme for other than government employee with investment focus on corporate debt generated return of 14.19 per cent while investment in government debt earned 13.52 per cent, an official statment said.

Besides, Swavlamban scheme generated a return of 13.40 per cent.

Pension scheme for Central Government earned a return of 12.39 per cent while the scheme for State Government generated 13 per cent, it said.

The NPS, which was introduced by the Central Government in January 2004 for its new entrants and subsequently extended to the private sector in May 2009, has accumulated a corpus of Rs 33,000 crore contributed by 50 lakhs subscribers, it said.

It is not only the cheapest retirement product but also as the highest returns generating scheme, PFRDA added.

Last year PFRDA had issued revised guidelines for registration of pension fund managers to manage NPS for Private sector, under which eight Pension Fund Managers have been registered so far.

The fund managers are SBI Pension Funds Pvt Ltd, UTI Retirement Solutions Ltd, LIC Pension Fund Ltd, Kotak Mahindra Pension Fund Ltd, Reliance Capital Pension Fund Ltd, ICICI Prudential Pension Funds Management Ltd, HDFC Pension Management Co Ltd and DSP Black Rock Pension Fund Managers Pvt Ltd.

Pension Fund Managers are now allowed to prescribe their own fee subject to ceiling of 0.25 per cent to enable an economically viable model for their operations.

PFRDA also recently revised its investment guidelines, with a view to improve performance of pension fund managers by direct investment in equity and corporate debt and not through mutual funds etc.

Further for better risk management, prudential sectoral norms have also been introduced, it said.