Kate Ellis, minister for employment participation and childcare and the status of women, said she is happy the opposition now supports the increase in superannuation to 12 per cent. But more needs to done for women to ensure their superannuation is adequate for retirement.
Ellis says the average superannuation payout to a male worker is $198,000. Women superannuation payments are on average $112,600.
“Seventy one per cent of women are not confident their superannuation will provide enough to live on when they retire,” she says.
As a result 42 per cent of women who re-enter the workforce after time away are working because of financial pressures, Ellis says.
There is a need to increase the number of women in the workforce, she says. Just 60 per cent of Australian women work, says Ellis.
Meanwhile, Paul Keating says the impetus for the increase of compulsory superannuation to 12 per cent began with him.
“Superannuation was my idea,” says Keating. “I’ve long said the system must get to at least a level of 12 per cent mandatory contributions.”
Keating, 67, spoke with I&T News while signing copies of his new book After Words at Potts Point Bookstore. He told people asking him to sign the book that he lived not far from the bookstore on Challis Avenue.
The former Prime Minister supports the increase in mandatory superannuation contributions to 12 per cent.
“Contributions at 9 per cent over a lifetime with average earnings will only reach a replacement rate of 40 per cent of average weekly earnings,” says Keating.
“Twelve per cent, fully matured, will reach a replacement rate of 70 per cent,” he says. “Seventy per cent is about the level you need in retirement.”