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Australian pensions chief warns of Budget ‘disaster’

The chief executive of the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia has warned the Budget reforms could be a “disaster waiting to happen”.

Speaking at the NAPF conference in Liverpool yesterday, Pauline Vamos said policymakers must ensure appropriate product regulation is in place ahead of the new freedoms coming into force in April next year.

She said: 
“If you are not regulating the market, you will get dodgy products in a new market. Unless you ensure the market is properly regulated, and comparable and transparent you’ve got a disaster waiting to happen.”


She added that the Australian public “hated intermediaries” and was “DIY” when it came to taking pensions advice.

Speaking at the same event, ABI director general Otto Thoresen said pension providers need clarity from Government about what will be expected of them in the future.

He said: 
“I know insurance companies are asking questions about where their responsibilities should start and stop.”

Whitbread group pensions director and NAPF DC council chair Lesley Williams also warned the narrow timescale of the pension reforms was putting the industry under pressure.


She said she wanted schemes to be able to provide income throughout retirement but there “isn’t the infrastructure today to pay income directly from DC funds”.


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