Keating blasts ScoMo’s retirement plan

 

Former Prime Minister Paul Keating has accused the Morrison government of trying to rob Australians of their nest egg after it was revealed a guaranteed increase to superannuation may be delayed.

The scheduled increase in superannuation, due to increase from 9.5 per cent to 12 per cent by 2025, was taken to the last election but could now be delayed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said on Friday a 600-page report into the validity of the retirement scheme made clear there was a "trade-off" between employers paying for higher super, which means low income workers in particular are less likely to secure wage increases.

"We will make a decision about that in light of current circumstances before the scheduled increase takes place,'' he said.

Speaking on ABC's 7.30 on Monday night, Mr Keating, who committed to compulsive superannuation increases as prime minister, said the government's intention showed it planned to squash the forced retirement savings scheme.

"We have got two great assets left in Australia - iron ore and superannuation and the government wants to kill superannuation," he said.

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Mr Keating says the government wants to kill superannuation.
Mr Keating says the government wants to kill superannuation.

 

"We have got a country with no wage growth. It has got no population growth. No Chinese tourists. No Chinese kids and now the Chinese government has got the trade bans on."

Removing compulsory conditions of superannuation and allowing Australians to invest through their own means would mean the population would have no savings, Mr Keating warned.

"That's what the report says," he told 7.30 host Leigh Sales. "Middle income earners would not save enough for retirement.

"This is not just Australians, this is true around the world. Unless you're compulsorily required to do it, they don't do it."

Reserve Bank governor Philip Lowe has warned an increase in superannuation would weaken an already stagnant wage growth.

A claim Mr Keating rubbished as "nonsense".

"The argument runs if you get an increase in super, you don't have it in wages. If you don't have it in super, you do have it in wages," he said.

"We have had no increase in superannuation since 2013 yet there was no wage increases since 2013.

"The argument, in the long run, if you consume something and don't save and not consume, of course, you will have less consumption over 30 or 40 years, but over a short period of time this is just a misreading of the current conditions.

"The Reserve Bank, the reverse bank I call them, always gets things wrong."

Originally published as Keating blasts ScoMo's retirement plan


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