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Without long term plan increase in super age inevitable

David PARKER

Spokesperson for Finance

24 February 2014                    MEDIA STATEMENT

Without long term plan sudden increase in super age inevitable

Without a long-term plan to gradually raise the retirement age to 67 National is risking a sudden increase in the eligibility age in the future, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.

“Australia is now openly considering raising the super age to 70, following in the footsteps of the UK. New Zealanders don’t want us to follow in those countries’ footsteps and nor does Labour.

“National’s pretence that the age for eligibility does not need to increase looks increasingly dishonest.

“Overseas announcements show how irresponsible the Government is being.

“Labour’s plan is to start gradually raising the super age to 67, by increasing the age by two months per year from 2020. That’s a fair and reasonable way to ensure we can pay for our retirement. We will also have an exception for those who can’t work past 65 in their normal job.

“The truth that National knows but won’t admit is that without a comprehensive long term plan in place there will be a fiscal blowout and a sudden rise in the age would be inevitable in the future.

“Since 2008 super costs have ballooned from $7.3 billion to $10.2 billion. This is already more than is spent on all benefits combined plus the accommodation supplement and working for families.

“The cost of super will soon be more than the Government spends putting our children through the entire education system from early childhood to university. New Zealanders agree it is simply wrong to spend more on superannuation than educating our children.

“The key to protecting universal superannuation is for National to take its head out of the sand. Sadly Bill English has already made it clear that won’t be happening,” says David Parker.

ENDS

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