AUSTRALIA - The Superannuation Clearing House, a free service that streamlines superannuation payments for small businesses, has had around 4,500 employers registered in its first year of operation, the government said.
It said the clearing house, operated by Medicare Australia, now covered 30,000 employees and had made 90,000 superannuation payments since its launch on July 1 2010.
Employers with less than 20 members of staff register their employees' superannuation fund details and contribution amounts and the clearing house distributes the contributions to the nominated funds.
"The small business response to the Superannuation Clearing House has been truly outstanding," said Senator Nick Sherry, Minister for Small Business. "96%of customers have said the Clearing House reduces the time it takes to make their superannuation payments. Of these, three quarters say it's saved them up to three hours per quarter, 15% say up to seven hours and 9% say they've saved up to eight hours per quarter."
Superannuation Minister, Bill Shorten said the Government started the service a year ago to solve the red tape created for small business by the former Coalition Government's introduction of choice of fund into the superannuation system.
"Take-up has been extremely encouraging, with the clearing house processing and disbursing almost A$50m ($52m) to employee superannuation funds," Shorten said.
Recently, the Opposition Coalition has proposed running a superannuation payments clearing house through the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), a move the ATO has estimated would cost A$257m over forward estimates and up to A$368m extra assuming higher take-up.
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