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  • Superannuation system

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    Superannuation is a specifically designed long-term investment vehicle for individuals' retirement savings. The retirement income system includes:

    • a compulsory element of superannuation, the superannuation guarantee. This requires employers to contribute a minimum level to their employees' superannuation accounts
    • a voluntary level of superannuation encouraged by tax concessions and the government's co-contribution scheme, and
    • the age pension and associated social security arrangements that provide an income safety net for retirees.

    The Tax Office plays a major role in administering the compulsory and voluntary elements of the superannuation system. During the period covered by these statistics, the Tax Office has responsibility for:

    • income tax on superannuation funds (reported in chapter 4)
    • the other income tax aspects of superannuation
    • the superannuation guarantee
    • the superannuation holding accounts special account
    • the Lost Members Register
    • departing Australia superannuation payments
    • the regulation of self managed superannuation funds
    • the co-contributions system
    • reasonable benefit limits
    • the superannuation contributions surcharge, and
    • the termination payments surcharge.

    An increasing number of Australians are directly affected by Australia's superannuation system tax regime.

    As at 30 June 2006, there were approximately 28.9 million member superannuation accounts. During the 2005-06 financial year there were:

    • $29.6 billion in member contributions
    • $46.3 billion in employer contributions, and
    • $36.0 billion in member benefit payments.

    By 30 June 2007, approximately 90% of employees had some form of superannuation. There were:

    • approximately 1.25 million active registered employers
    • 366,213 superannuation funds, and
    • $1,153 billion in total assets held by superannuation funds.

    For information reported by superannuation funds for the 2005-06 income year, see Chapter 4.

     

    OVERVIEW

    During the 2006-07 financial year:

    • the number of self managed superannuation funds grew by 13% while the value of assets held by these funds grew by 30%
    • there were 1.2 million co-contribution entitlements determined and paid, totalling $1,858 million, and
    • there were significant improvements in the number of lost members with over 1.7 million superannuation accounts being removed from the Lost Members Register.
     
      Last modified: 18 Mar 2008QC 20124