A 'CHAOTIC' social security system is wasting $100 million a year and allowing the welfare net to fall below that of many countries including China, experts say. The Hong Kong Social Security Society said yesterday poor people in Guangzhou received social assistance payments equal to 39 per cent of the city's average salary, compared to about 17 per cent in Hong Kong. About 13 per cent of the territory's population was poor, according to an international scale used to check poverty, the society said. That was about average, but Hong Kong was spending about a third less than other countries on social security, the study said. The society urged the future SAR government to review the system, which they described as chaotic, saying improvements could save up to $100 million in administration costs. They also urged the Government to increase payments to the elderly by at least $300 a month immediately after the handover. Chairman of the Society, Dr Leung Shing-on, said the proposed increase would only be a two-thousandth of the Government's Budget. 'As poverty became prevalent in the territory, our social security policy remained very conservative,' said Dr Leung. 'We suppose it was due to the transfer of sovereignty, but more changes should be made after the handover.' Needy people had been given various amounts of assistance money based on welfare workers' guesswork, said society vice-chairman Dr Henry Mok Tai-kee. Single elderly people have been paid the highest basic amount - $2,060 - while single parents receive about $500 less. Dr Mok said there should be a standard amount for each recipient, topped up with allowances, such as old age and disability. He criticised the Government for giving the number of cases rather than the exact number of people in the safety net, saying one case could involve more than one person. The group has suggested ways to streamline the system to the Health and Welfare branch and the Legislative Council, but has yet to receive any response.