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Sherry can't have it both ways.

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5 February 2003


Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Revenue Senator Helen Coonan said the ALP appeared completely confused about where it stood on the rights of Australian superannuation investors.

"Labor's spokesman, Senator Nick Sherry, is on the one hand railing against the fees being charged by some superannuation funds, but on the other hand opposing the Government's attempts to give workers the right to change funds," Senator Coonan said.

"Based on a report from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, Senator Sherry is arguing that some of the most expensive funds are also the worst performing.

"I would have thought that was a very sound reason for giving investors the opportunity to change funds, not an argument against it.

"Increasing competition in the superannuation market can only help reduce fees and improve services, by giving employers the chance to take their business elsewhere.

"Workers who are stuck in a non-performing fund can stay there indefinitely while their savings evaporate as far as Senator Sherry is concerned.

"It's simply not good enough.

"Legislation implemented by this Government already requires all fees and charges to be disclosed, and it was Labor who scrapped regulations which would have enhanced that regime even further.

"Senator Sherry's policy is that a Labor Government would set prices and mandate services, leading to red tape, cross-subsidisation and enforcing a plain vanilla superannuation fund on everyone, regardless of their needs.

"A recent survey has clearly shown that Australians want the right to choose their super funds. Labor should listen to the Australian people and let the Government reduce fees and improve services by agreeing to superannuation choice and introducing competition into the market."

© Commonwealth of Australia 2000