Shadow finance minister Stephen Jones has called on the government to “put down the weapons” and stop trying to kneecap the superannuation guarantee.
In a speech to the Chifley Research Centre, Mr Jones accused Prime Minister Scott Morrison of trying to convert superannuation savings into “[de facto] bank accounts”, destroying the ability of super funds to make [long-term] investments, and “nobbling” super growth by cancelling legislated rates.
“The war against universal superannuation is real,” Mr Jones said. “By storm or by stealth the objective is to destroy that part of our economy which has done so much to see us through the worst of the crisis and is critical to building our future.
“Make no mistake, if the opponents of universal super win, the consequence will be the destruction of jobs, the crippling of economic growth, an increase in taxes and a less secure future.
“The Prime Minister’s inability to subdue the wreakers in his own ranks puts us all at risk.”
Mr Jones warned that the government’s repeated attacks on the superannuation guarantee will lead to “higher taxes, lower productivity, fewer jobs and a bleak future for retirees”.
“Inequality will grow with a monstrous distortion of existing tax concessions,” Mr Jones said. “The wealthiest 1 per cent of Australians who already receive twice as much taxpayer support for their retirement income as the poorest 10 per cent will continue to do so.
“Meanwhile the taxes paid by waiters, childcare workers, truck drivers and shop assistants will be subsidising the superannuation of the wealthy.”
Mr Jones also warned that Australia would need a strong and stable superannuation system with a mandate to invest in infrastructure and create jobs in order to bolster the economic recovery.
“If Scott Morrison is genuine about putting down the weapons – he should start with the war on superannuation,” Mr Jones said. “If he does this we can rebound faster and better because a stronger superannuation sector means more jobs and a stronger economic future for all Australians.”
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