2 May, 2021
Infrastructure in the North could be funded by Super Reforms
Queensland Senator, Susan McDonald, supports proposed amendments to superannuation laws that will aid in her campaign for increased private-sector funding of infrastructure in Northern Australia.
The Your Future, Your Super reforms announced this week by the Morrison Government include a performance test and are designed to ensure the superannuation system cuts waste, makes fee structures more transparent and improve confidence in domestic assets.
The Government has added Australian unlisted infrastructure and unlisted property as specific asset classes covered by the performance test.
This will ensure the changes do not discourage Australian superannuation funds from investing more in domestic assets.
Senator McDonald said proposed changes to benchmark indices would make it easier for infrastructure investment in Northern Australia.
“I have been raising the concern that superannuation companies utilising listed benchmarks could discourage trustees making investments in important and necessary Australian projects,” she said.
“The North is becoming littered with commercially-viable, nation-building infrastructure projects that simply cannot get funding and have stalled.
“The solution is simple: we need to attract institutional investors like superannuation funds to invest in ports, roads, dams, energy generators and railways.
“Pension funds are active in Northern Australia but amazingly, most of these are foreign entities.
“We should continue to explore how we can do more to attract and encourage super funds to Northern Australia. This is something that government, regulators and fund managers all need to work together to achieve, and I am dedicated to ensuring this occurs.
“We have a world-record $3 trillion in Australian super funds that could be used to advance the North, and I believe we can unlock this vast investment pool with these proposed Your Future, Your Super reforms.”
The reforms are open for public feedback at https://treasury.gov.au/consultation/c2021-162375