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Monday, 26 November 2012
Page: 13183


Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongMinister for Financial Services and Superannuation and Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations) (17:01): I thank the member for North Sydney for getting up this morning, I thank him for being here and I thank him for the efforts he makes on his side. The reason we are putting this amendment forward is because we continue to consult with industry—

Mr Katter: Would the member for North Sydney describe himself as a kind and generous person?

Mr Hockey: Yes, I would.

Mr SHORTEN: I will return to the bill. I am sorry to interrupt the—

Mr Hockey: On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Please do not abuse it.

Mr Hockey: I thought the member for Kennedy was very fair and I wanted to make sure his comment was properly recorded in Hansard.

Mr SHORTEN: The government is committed to reforming superannuation and we continue to do that. The member for North Sydney, in speaking against the amendment, has challenged the government's bona fides in superannuation. Thank goodness Labor are in government in Australia, because we are the ones lifting superannuation from nine per cent to 12 per cent. Thank goodness Labor are in government, because we are the ones reforming financial planning laws so that people can have greater confidence in the advice they are getting. Thank goodness Labor are in government, because we are the ones who abolished the discrimination against people over 70 who are employees—they will be able to get superannuation. Thank goodness Labor are in government, because we are the ones abolishing the tax on superannuation contributions made by people who earn less than $37,000 a year. This last issue falls into the coalition's Bermuda Triangle of policy, where ideas mysteriously disappear into the opposition's policy think tank—if that is not a tautology. What is the opposition's policy on abolishing the 15 per cent tax paid by people who earn less than $37,000 a year?

Perhaps it is the member for North Sydney's personal philosophy not to always be mindlessly negative, given that they are not opposing this amendment. Perhaps we do see the hand of Hockey here—the hand of North Sydney—cooperating on policies which make sense, which this one does. We will continue to negotiate with industry, we will continue to negotiate with the opposition and we will continue to make our superannuation system the envy of the world.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The question is that the amendments be agreed to.

Question agreed to.