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Tuesday, 25 March 1997
Page: 2426


Senator ALLISON(8.56 p.m.) —I want to remind the minister about the policy of the government in relation to choice, because that is what is at the heart of these amendments. I remind the minister that the coalition said:

The small amounts problem which could be resolved by allowing employees greater freedom to choose the fund into which contribution may be consolidated, the current inflexibility of the superannuation system is contrary to other areas of policy . . . The coalition accepts that unlimited freedom of choice would impose an onerous and costly burden on employers. However, limited freedom of choice will provide the benefits of competition . . .

We are not talking about unbridled, unlimited freedom of choice. We are talking about giving sufficient information to employees at the point at which they enter an RSA so that they have some sort of choice. That is the purpose of these amendments.

Otherwise we do not believe there is any real choice for employees in the bill as it presently stands. We feel very strongly about these amendments. We think they are central to the whole question of choice and to the protection of RSA holders potentially. I urge the Senate to think very carefully about these amendments and to support them.