Solid support for legislating super objective

superannuation objective support

Australians have expressed their support to legislate the objective of superannuation with the proviso it will focus on retirement income for all.

Consumer research conducted by the Financial Services Council (FSC) has shown Australians support the concept of enshrining the objective of superannuation in law as long as it focuses on delivering retirement income for everyone.

The key findings of the study revealed respondents felt all Australians would be served better by legislating the objective of superannuation, that the objective should concentrate on delivering income in retirement while still allowing them to determine where and how their retirement savings are invested, and the wording of the definition should include wording specifically referring to achieving a certain standard of living in retirement.

Further, the preference of the participants in the study was for the industry-backed proposed objective, that being: “To provide an adequate income in retirement to ensure all Australians achieve a comfortable standard of living in retirement, supplementing or substituting the aged pension.”

“Australians share a strong belief that the superannuation system should be designed with a singular focus on their retirement,” FSC chief executive Blake Briggs noted.

“Despite there not being a legislated objective of superannuation to date, Australians know what their superannuation is for and do not believe legislating an objective should open the door to political objectives, such as investing in nation building infrastructure.”

According to Briggs, it is imperative for the government to reflect the expectations of average Australians in any legislated objective of superannuation resulting from its consultation process.

“Government should seize the opportunity and move ahead on a simple definition that can be commonly understood by all Australians and that the superannuation industry is unified on,” he said.

“An enshrined objective for superannuation would lead to more stability in policy settings and end the cycle of constant tinkering, which undermines confidence in the system.”

The study was conducted by CT Group in December 2022 and consisted of analysing responses from four focus groups located in the federal electorates of Bennelong, Parramatta, Reid and Gilmore. Two of these groups included respondents over the age of 40, while the other two involved individuals who were under 40.

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