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Wednesday, 29 June 1994
Page: 2253

Senator WOODLEY (11.39 a.m.) —That was a very passionate speech that Senator O'Chee just made. It is a shame that some of the facts he cited as the basis for his speech are not as I understand them. He referred to the government's announcement as a press release. It was certainly much more than that. It was a major announcement which was made at the end of June 1992.

Senator O'Chee —It is not legislation.

Senator WOODLEY —I hear Senator O'Chee's point. I listened to him very carefully. It was not a press release; it was a major statement on retirement incomes. The market, which I know the coalition is very keen to follow, has operated on the basis of that statement. Financial advisers have been saying to their clients, `This is government policy' and have been operating on that basis. The market has taken note of that announcement. I believe that financial advisers have been acting very responsibly in that regard.

  However, we do agree with the opposition that retrospectivity is a very dangerous basis for government legislation; we simply disagree about the timing. I want to make it clear that we disagree with the opposition in respect of the timing. Following advice from many people in the market that the retrospectivity should be addressed and that 1992 would address the problem, we are also at this point taking that advice and, therefore, are sticking to the date which we are suggesting.