22 May 2015

Super for working over-65s unfair - Little

5:58 pm on 22 May 2015

The Labour Party will look at not paying superannuation to people who carry on working after 65, leader Andrew Little says.

Andrew Little giving his Post Budget 2015 speech.

Andrew Little delivering his post-Budget speech in Wellington Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Labour went into last year's election with a policy of raising the age of superannuation entitlement to 67 over time, but Mr Little ditched the policy once he became leader.

The party had announced a full review all of its policies after its dismal showing at last year's election.

Mr Little said it was unfair for people working after they turn 65 to be able to claim superannuation as well.

"I don't think we can avoid looking [at that], when you look at the driving cost of superannuation, by 2018 over $15 billion a year, by 2030, $30 billion a year.

"If you want to leave the age of eligibility at 65 which is my personal view ... the question then is, those who can continue to work after the age of 65 working alongside those who don't get it - is that fair?

"And I think we need to look at that in terms of fairness."

Mr Little said the looming cost of superannuation had to be dealt with and he believed that could be done without raising the age of eligibility.

Prime Minister John Key has been adamant a Government he leads will not raise the age of superannuation eligibility.

Meanwhile, after his post-Budget speech today, Finance Minister Bill English dangled the prospect of tax cuts in the 2017 Budget even though he said the Government had to continue keeping a tight rein on its spending.

He said told reporters tax cuts would depend on the state of the economy and the Government's finances at the time.

Mr English said he did not want to pre-judge what any tax reductions would look like but said it remained a possibility if things stay on track.

But Prime Minister John Key has dismissed Mr Little and said he's wrong to say it is unfair for people working after they turn 65 to claim superannuation as well.

"About 30 percent of the country do work in some form at aged over 65 and actually for a lot of them the lowest income New Zealanders with the least amount of savings, the combination of some work, maybe part time, in some cases fulltime, and their pensions gives them a much nicer lifestyle in retirement," he said.

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