AUSTRALIA - The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) has attacked the Labor party's super proposals, saying they put super at risk of being used as a "political honeypot".
“Over $5bn (e2.8bn) is being carved out of super support – with only $1.3bn (e736m) being put back in via the proposed reduction in contributions tax,” said CEO of ASFA, Philippa Smith (pictured).
“It would make much better sense if the savings were channelled into savings incentives for individuals, otherwise it smacks of opportunism.”
Smith described Labor’s proposals as “public policy for the next four weeks, not Australia’s future”.
ASFA said the current level of savings fall “woefully short” of the minimum expectations of people preparing for retirement and called on government to be a more active partner in sending the right incentives and helping bridge the gap.
The super watchdog criticised Labor’s plans to abolish the super co-contribution scheme, raise the superannuation surcharge from 13 to 15%, reinstate the work test recently abolished by the government for people under 65 who wish to contribute to super and utilise money from super contributions paid on behalf of temporary residents and lost super accounts.
It said Labor could have offered a “more constructive and far-sighted” super package by better targeting the super co-contribution, through a family income test and rolling back the super contributions tax at a faster pace.
But Smith did not stop short of attacking the government’s super provisions.
“At present, both major parties’ super and retirement policies are incomplete and patchy,” she said.
“A clear vision and strategy are urgently needed. There is an opportunity for the Coalition to seize the day on super and trounce Labor’s poor effort.”
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