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  • Superannuation system


    Superannuation system chapter


    Superannuation system detailed tables


    Taxation statistics - whole document


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

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

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

    • income tax on super funds (reported in chapter 4)
    • the other income tax aspects of super
    • the superannuation guarantee
    • the superannuation holding accounts special account
    • the Lost Members Register
    • unclaimed super monies
    • departing Australia super payments
    • the regulation of self-managed super funds
    • the co-contributions system
    • excess contributions tax on individuals
    • the superannuation contributions surcharge
    • the termination payments surcharge
    • the temporary residents measure.

    An increasing number of Australians are directly affected by Australia's super system tax regime. By 30 June 2010, there were:

    • approximately 1.36 million registered employers
    • 431,968 super funds
    • $1.28 trillion in total assets held by super funds.

    As at 30 June 2009, approximately 89% of employees had some form of super and there were approximately 32.7 million member super accounts.

    During the 2008-09 financial year there were:

    • $39.9 billion in member contributions
    • $71.1 billion in employer contributions
    • $61.9 billion in member benefit payments.

    For information reported by super funds for the 2008-09 income year, see chapter 4.


    During the 2009-10 financial year:

    • the number of self-managed super funds grew by 6.1% while the total value of assets held by these funds grew by an estimated 14.5%
    • there were approximately 1.4 million co-contribution entitlements determined and paid, totalling $1,275 million
    • the Lost Members Register continued to grow with the total value of lost accounts increasing by 38%, from $13.6 billion on 30 June 2009 to $18.8 billion on 30 June 2010.
      Last modified: 18 Oct 2011QC 23907