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AIST’s second submission on the Your Future Your Super legislation has called on the Government to re-think the bill, pointing out that it will not achieve its stated intent and should not proceed.
In a media release today, AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck said the Bill was so flawed that an entirely new approach was needed to achieve the worthy objective (which AIST fully supported) of addressing superannuation underperformance and multiple accounts.
Our submission to the Senate Economics Legislation Committee outlines where the Bill significantly deviates from Productivity Commission and Royal Commission findings and recommendations, highlighting that key measures in the Bill are either un-tested or lack evidence to back them.
AIST will provide a link to our submission once it is published on the Senate Committee wesbite.
AIST has this week released the results of a survey of Chief Investment Officers of our member funds on the impact of a provision in the bill to provide the government with the power to ban super funds from certain investments, even if these investments are in members’ interests.
The survey which was prominently covered by the Age/SMH, found that 90% of CIO respondents were concerned that the government would have the power to ban investments, even when they are in the members’ best financial interest.
The same number believe the provision will impact investment decisions, while 70% think it would hurt member returns
The survey also showed that 90% of CIOs were concerned the government’s proposed performance test will also negatively impact member returns because it would lead to changes in portfolio design.
The respondents represented 20 AIST member funds, covering nearly 10 million members and more than $630 billion in FUM.
AIST has raised concerns about Government proposals to allow domestic violence victims fleeing their abusers to access up to $10,000 from their superannuation accounts.
Earlier this week, the Government announced that it would be releasing draft legislation on these measures, first unveiled more than two years ago in the 2018 Women’s Economic Security Statement. The superannuation-specific measures include two measures: A new compassionate ground for early access to super that would allow domestic violence victims to apply for up to $10,000 of their super to be withdrawn “as an important last resort lifeline”; and a measure that will allow the sharing of superannuation data between the courts and the ATO.
AIST strongly supports the second measure but not the first which would not only financially penalise women but also send the wrong signal that family violence victims are expected to tap into their retirement savings for financial support rather than accessing other means.
As the two measures were set to be contained in the one Bill, AIST will be advocating for the Government to proceed only with the data sharing measure to avoid any further delay to domestic violence victims who have struggled for far too long to gain access to their partner’s super balance details during separation or divorce proceedings.
The ATO has outlined action on Eligible Roller Funds (ERFs) and Trustee Voluntary Payments following the passage through Parliament of the Treasury Laws Amendment (Reuniting More Superannuation) Bill 2020.
The Bill – which is awaiting Royal Assent - facilitates the closure of ERFs and allows super providers to make Trustee Voluntary Payments (TVPs).
In a CRT alert the ATO says ERFs must identify accounts they hold on 1 June 2021. The statement and payment will be due and payable by:
In regard to TVPs, although the provisions allow for TVP reporting and payment to occur at any time, the ATO is coordinating the transfer of this new category of unclaimed super money (USM) for an interim period.
It asks that superannuation providers do not transfer any TVP amounts until it communicates the interim reporting solution.
New ATO data for the financial year ending 30 June, 2020 shows unclaimed super is now sitting at $13.8 billion, $7 billion less than the previous financial year.
According to the ATO data, NSW tops the nation in unclaimed and lost amounts at over $3 billion, and 6 of the top 10 postcodes. Victoria and QLD have around $2 billion, WA over $1 billion, SA has $798 million, the ACT $231 million, Tasmania $135 million and the NT has $161 million.
The Joint Standing Committee on Trade and Investment Growth has called for Australia to pivot towards new export markets and reduce its reliance on China.
The report – which includes 21 recommendations - examines how the Government could support businesses to diversify Australia’s trade markets and sources of foreign investment.
The Committee has recommended that the Government develop a plan for trade diversification and examine options to expand domestic investment and production.
“These reforms will protect Australia from the risks of having too many eggs in one basket,” Committee chair, George Christensen said.
‘Diversifying the range of products and services that Australia exports, including through greater support for future-focused and innovative industries, will further ensure Australia is not overexposed to trade disruptions or shocks in any one export market.”
The current status of superannuation Bills currently before Parliament can be found here.
18 March 2021