#Time2Enshrine campaign calling for legislative objectives for super

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SuperConcepts has launched a new campaign – #Time2Enshrine – in support of putting objectives for the superannuation system in legislation.

“Throughout this month we are encouraging people to join the conversation about what purpose they think our superannuation system should serve, and tagging comments and posts with #Time2Enshrine,” said SuperConcepts CEO Lara Bourguignon.

Setting objectives for superannuation was a recommendations of the Coalition’s Financial System Inquiry. The FSI recommended seeking “broad political agreement” for the objectives.

The Superannuation (Objective) Bill 2016 was introduced to Parliament in November 2016, which is the same month in which it was last debated. A Senate committee recommended, in 2017, that the Bill be passed. The Bill lapsed at the end of the last Parliament.

The question of adequacy – if to include it, or not, in the objective – has been the main issue of contention in debate around the objectives.

“We know from previous surveys that the constant changes to the super rules are the biggest ‘turnoff’ when it comes to contributing more to super, which affects retirement income,” said Bourguignon.

“Superannuation is the most tax advantaged retirement savings vehicle and it’s disappointing these concessions and the advantages of making voluntary super contributions are often overshadowed by the constant fear of rule changes.”

“It’s now time for the objectives of super to once and for all be enshrined in the legislation to avoid such a clash of policy ideas and the potential impact on people’s lives.”

“We need to define the objectives of super which in our view should be aspirational and encourage self-provision in retirement.”

“We believe the objective of super should portray super not only as a safety net but also as a vehicle which targets financial independence and a dignified retirement for all Australians.”

“We believe this objective must be enshrined in the legislation and a mechanism put in place to compel policy makers to refer to this objective when assessing competing super proposals.”

“Without this mechanism in place, enshrining the objectives of super would serve little purpose.”

As drafted, the Objectives Bill only requires changes to superannuation include a statement of compatibility with the objectives.

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