One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has indicated she will support the 0.5 per cent increase to mandated superannuation contributions and has demanded a new definition for the purpose of super, following the release of the Retirement Income Review.
The legislated superannuation guarantee increase to 10 per cent is scheduled to commence in July, but the government will make its final decision on whether the rise will proceed in May.
Senator Hanson has also demanded Treasurer Josh Frydenberg clarify the purpose of superannuation, insisting people should not be allowed to withdraw their retirement savings as a lump sum.
“If the purpose of superannuation today is to increasingly fund caravan and land cruiser sales, it’s succeeding,” she said.
“But if it’s the purpose of superannuation is to give workers of today a better, self-funded lifestyle in their twilight years without taking a taxpayer-funded pension, it’s failing. I think a growing number of Australians have forgotten what superannuation is there for.”
She added if the purpose of superannuation is not redefined, the government might as well grant the increases to people through their pay packets.
“While the money belongs to the employee, it wasn’t designed to be cashed out as a lump sum and blown, only to leave a person on a government pension for the rest of their lives,” Senator Hanson said.
“People should not be encouraged to squander their superannuation.”
Treasury released the long-awaited Retirement Income Review on Friday, which placed greater emphasis on decumulation and Australians using voluntary savings, including equity within their homes, ahead of raising compulsory super contributions.
A number of Coalition MPs have already pushed for a greater focus on home ownership, including Tim Wilson, who has pushed for super access for first home buyers.
“Owning your own home should take priority over superannuation,” Mr Wilson tweeted on Monday.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison had previously committed to the SG increase, legislated to rise to 12 per cent in 2025, as an election promise. He has since signalled the government may freeze the increase amid concerns it would impact jobs and growth.
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].