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SMSFs deserve proper debate: Ripoll

The industry and major political parties needed to take a common-ground approach to dealing with the many challenges facing the superannuation sector, especially complex SMSF issues, the opposition financial services and superannuation spokesman Bernie Ripoll has said.

“There’s certainly a lot of common issues that operate across all sectors of superannuation [but SMSF] issues do deserve a proper debate,” Ripoll explained.

“There is a lot of work to be done, I have no doubt, but if we are to continue to have a robust, solid system of superannuation and if we want to make it better, stronger, more efficient, and if we want it to keep pace with what we all expect to be a certain living standard in Australia, then there are things in the future that not only need to be debated but potentially will need to change.

“And I don’t think that change in that respect ought to be pushed against.”

Ripoll stressed Labor did not believe superannuation should be an area of conflict between political parties or between competing interests within the sector.

“We continue to be prepared to have an open dialogue with community and the government around any proposed changes to make superannuation more sustainable, and I think this must extend more broadly to industry and all other stakeholders as well,” he said.

“There will be some areas where we will not all agree, but there is so much more common ground between us that can move forward to make many improvements in the superannuation system – many improvements that need to be done.

“My message to you today would be to seek out areas where consensus can be found and work on solutions to the problems we all identify for the future sustainability of the system in the best interest of all Australians.”

He said SMSF advisers would play an ever-increasing and important role in the superannuation system’s evolution.

“I certainly do appreciate your activities and work through myself and others, so I very much congratulate you for that,” he said.

“I wish you all the very best in deliberating some of the more difficult issues that we all face and hopefully the parliament can come along with you on some of those changes.”

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