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Raising Super Age Not the Answer – Peters

Rt. Hon Winston Peters
Leader NZ First

27 October 2011

Raising Super Age Not the Answer – Peters

New Zealand First says Labour’s new policy of lifting the entitlement age of superannuation to 67 is an admission of failure to grasp economic opportunities.

Labour today announced it would raise the pension age to 67, make KiwiSaver compulsory for all working New Zealanders and increase employer contributions.

Rt Hon Winston Peters has long advocated a compulsory retirement scheme but says there is no need to lift the age of eligibility if New Zealand cranks up KiwiSaver now, starts buying back overseas owned assets and lifts economic growth.

“Our problem is that New Zealanders are fighting over pieces of a shrinking cake instead of increasing the size of it. Many people in their sixties are simply unable to work and employers do not as a rule employ older people.

“It is mean spirited to expect a person who has raised a family and paid his or her taxes to go out job seeking at the age of 66 – particularly if there are not enough jobs to go around as is the situation now.

“However, if we start accumulating funds in New Zealand now and invest them to boost farming, manufacturing, fishing and other export industries there would be no need to lift the age of eligibility.

“For example, New Zealand First would direct KiwiSaver to buy the Crafar farms instead of letting them go to a foreign company. KiwiSaver could also buy back the breweries that made record profits for their foreign owners during the Rugby World Cup.

“The opportunities are under our noses and we should take them instead of penalising senior citizens with policies set sometime in the dim future,” says Mr Peters.

ENDS

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