Angela Foulkes To Chair Superannuation 2000 Taskforce

  • Roger Sowry
Social Services, Work and Income

Exactly a year after Periodic Reporting Group presented their findings on superannuation (the Todd report), the Hon Roger Sowry Minister of Social Services, Work and Income announced the make-up of the new Superannuation 2000 Taskforce today.

The Superannuation 2000 Taskforce - announced as part of the Policies for Progress - will have ten independent members representing a broad spectrum of society, plus all parties in Parliament will be invited to supply a member.

Mr Sowry said the PRG report called for true multi-party talks, saying a sustainable superannuation scheme was "heavily dependent on political consensus".

"A year ago I challenged each politician to make a New Year's resolution to put aside their political differences for the sake of New Zealands' future economic and social security.

"We did not achieve that consensus, and despite our best efforts, superannuation continued to be used as a political football. "

"The Superannuation 2000 Taskforce has the ability to fulfill the wishes of the 85% of New Zealanders who want the politics taken out of superannuation."

Mr Sowry said he was delighted to have Angela Foulkes of the Council of Trade Unions chairing the Superannuation 2000 Taskforce , with Murray Horn, chief executive of the ANZ as deputy chair.

The other eight members are: Colin Blair (the Retirement Commissioner), Rodney Cook (chief executive AMP), Paul Fyfe (Investment, Savings and Insurance Association), Gary Hawke (Professor of Economics Victoria University), Ann Knowles (Employers' Federation), Alison Mau (journalist and news anchor), Lys Noble (chair Senior Citizens Advisory Council) and Rahera Ohia (Maori policy consultant).

"These members represent a broad spectrum of society from young people for whom retirement is a long way off, through to baby-boomers, and those who are of retirement age. "

Mr Sowry said the Taskforce are charged with putting New Zealand's retirement income policies on a sustainable, affordable and certain basis.

All political parties will have an open invitation to participate in the Superannuation 2000 Taskforce. Any parties which choose not to join will still receive working papers and minutes from the group, Mr Sowry said.

"The National Government is serious about sustainable superannuation. Politics must be set aside to solve this problem and I hope all parties will seize the opportunity to be involved in the process.," he said.