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GRT Appointed Provider State Sector Super Scheme

MEDIA RELEASE
16 FEBRUARY 2004
For immediate release


GLOBAL RETIREMENT TRUST APPOINTED AS MASTER TRUST PROVIDER TO NEW STATE SECTOR RETIREMENT SAVINGS SCHEME

The Global Retirement Trust, a NZ-owned, not-for-profit specialist in state sector superannuation provision has been appointed by the State Services Commission (SSC) as one of four approved providers to manage a new subsidised scheme for state sector employees.

The Global Retirement Trust (GRT) will manage the scheme in association with Mercer Human Resource Consulting, who will provide administration and member education services. Mercer is an established international leader in superannuation administration. The GRT/Mercer combination has been well proven in their highly successful management of the government-subsidised Teachers Retirement Savings Scheme, which was launched in 2002 for primary school teachers and principals and is widely regarded as the template for the new state sector scheme.

The appointment, announced today by State Services Commissioner Michael Wintringham, is a key step in the lead-up to the launch of the new Crown-subsidised scheme, which will be open to up to 100,000 state sector employees from 1 July 2004.

GRT General Manager Louise Gibson said there is a high level of interest in the scheme, which is being greeted by state sector employees as a real encouragement to save for their retirement.

"The GRT is delighted to be part of this very positive, exciting opportunity for a large group of New Zealand workers to start saving for their retirement in a meaningful way. We're also pleased to be able to build on our long-standing 11-year relationship with state sector employees, employers and unions."

The GRT was established as an independent master trust by the SSC in 1992 to meet state sector employees' retirement savings needs (following the closure of the GSF to new members). It already manages the retirement savings accounts of over 22,000 state sector employees with pooled retirement savings of over $420 million, in a range of superannuation schemes offered by individual government departments, Mercer is the world's largest employee benefit consultancy, and administers employer-based superannuation schemes with over 500,000 members in Australasia alone.

Head of Mercer New Zealand Tim Jenkins, said the GRT/Mercer partnership was ideally suited to meet the needs of state sector savers.

"The GRT's unique track record and credentials in state sector superannuation provision combined with Mercer's leading edge technology and expertise stand us in excellent stead for managing the new state sector scheme".

Ms Gibson said the GRT/Mercer experience in successfully establishing, promoting and managing the Teachers' Scheme had been valuable preparation for managing the new scheme.

"The uptake and continuing strong growth in the Teachers' Scheme demonstrates what can be achieved with a well-designed, well-promoted scheme that has the backing of employers and wins the confidence of employees.

"The new scheme is the first major initiative of its kind across the whole of government in the past 11 years and we expect a very positive response to it, both from state sector employees and all those interested in seeing New Zealanders save adequately for their retirement."

ENDS

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