In 2016, CSRI convened two policy roundtables in collaboration with the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. The overarching goal was to develop policies to improve the efficiency of the retirement income system and the use of superannuation balances and in so doing to relieve pressure on the Australian budget and improve living standards in retirement.
The outcomes sought for the Encouraging Self Provision Roundtable were to identify measures for improving superannuation tax and means testing arrangements with a view to balancing the conflicting considerations of encouraging self-provision and improving fiscal sustainability.
The Roundtable considered:
- Improving the efficiency of the safety net including the relationships between savings, age pension eligibility and home ownership.
- Evaluation of alternative approaches to improving the effectiveness of superannuation tax arrangements in promoting secure and adequate lifetime incomes in retirement including the level and fairness of the tax concessions.
- Implications of the regulatory treatment of housing for aged care and the aged pension and options for accessing home equity
- Importance of encouraging continued workforce participation and saving for retirement, while recognising different capacities to do so and different preferences regarding the transition from work to retirement including consideration of evidence of behavioural responses to policy frameworks.
The roundtables’ outcomes will contribute to the development of a series of position papers that in turn will be subjected to debate and scrutiny at the CSRI Leadership Forum later in 2016. The aim is to build a broad coalition of support for a holistic reform agenda for the Australian retirement income system.