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Assocation tells Govt to get a move on

ISI chief executive Vance Arkinstall rates the Budget.

Monday, May 24th 1999, 12:00AM

by Philip Macalister

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-Finance minister Bill Birch's fourth and final budget was a disappointment for the savings industry, Investment Savings and Insurance Association chief executive Vance Arkinstall says.
The budget, which was delivered on Thursday, failed to produce any substantial initiatives to help New Zealanders prepare for their retirement years.
Arkinstall says the Government is telling people to start saving for their retirement, however its budget did nothing to remove some of the impediments to saving.
"They don't need to keep telling us (to save)," Arkinstall says. "We actually want them to get on and do something."
Tax neutrality is one of the key areas the ISI wants to see progress made. Currently the association is working on a paper that discusses tax issues and it is expecting the Government to consult with it soon on the subject.
Arkinstall says the Government wants to have a closer working relationship with the industry and he is expecting it will soon outline to the ISI how it plans to address tax neutrality of savings products following the demise of the tax on life insurance and savings (Tolis) legislation last year.
Birch says the 10-person Super 2000 Taskforce will look at ways of solving the problems surrounding superannuation and retirement savings.
Arkinstall says the problem with that approach is that the taskforce isn't due to report back to the Government until November 2000, then legislation will have to be prepared and passed.
"If we are going to wait for the taskforce we are going to lose two to three years of savings contributions."
Arkinstall wants to see the super issues pushed to a conclusion in a quicker timeframe.
See what Bill Birch said about retirement savings

Click here for a wrap up of what was in the budget.

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