AUSTRALIA - Lower and middle income earning women are benefiting most from the government's superannuation co-contribution scheme, new figures have shown.
Minister for revenue and assistant treasurer Mal Brough (pictured) said of the initial processing run of 215,000 lower and middle income earners who will receive a co-contribution payment in the 2003/2004 financial year, 59% are women.
“Today’s figures are a positive sign that the superannuation co-contribution scheme is helping women to build wealth for their retirement future,” Brough said.
“Women are clearly showing they want to ‘upsize’ their retirement savings.”
Eligibility for the co-contribution payment in the 2003/2004 financial year is based on the government matching dollar for dollar personal super contributions made by persons earning AUS$27,500, phasing out at AUS$40,000.
In the 2004/2005 Budget the government extended the co-contribution scheme, increasing the lower and upper thresholds to include more of the population.
“Eligible personal superannuation contributions will now be matched at 150% for every dollar contributed subject to an increased maximum co-contribution of AUS$1500 for those persons on incomes up to the increased lower threshold of a AUS$28,000,” Brough said.
“The maximum co-contribution will also now phase out at an increased upper threshold of AUS$58,000, up from AUS$40,000.”
The assistant treasurer took the opportunity to slam the Opposition describing Labor’s vision for Australian women in retirement as one of “total dependence on their spouse’s superannuation or the pension.”
Labor had promised to abolish the co-contribution scheme had the party been elected at the October Federal election.
“There are 31 female ALP members and senators in parliament, perhaps they could drag their male colleagues into the 21st century and get behind the co-contribution scheme,” Brough said.
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