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InvestmentLink calls for electronic KiwiSaver access

e-Commerce infrastructure provider InvestmentLink is supportive of the KiwiSaver proposals announced by the government, but says there needs to be changes and it will “need consolidated support and industry investment” to succeed.

Tuesday, May 9th 2006, 7:16AM
"We feel that without a number of changes to the final KiwiSaver legislation, the ability for KiwiSaver funds to provide a competitive, technologically savvy and low-cost offering will be very limited," InvestmentLink chief executive Peter Philip says in a statement.

His New Zealand counterpart, Maurice MacLaren, says: "Given the likely level of contribution per member in the early years of the scheme, the forecast levels of take-up by employees, and the pressure created by the government’s threat of an administration fee cap on providers, it is imperative effective IT systems for administering provider schemes are implemented, as these systems will be critical for controlling costs."

At present, the KiwiSaver bill does not permit KiwiSaver funds to provide online access via web-site portals, limiting the ability for employers to make online contributions nor does it specifically permit or encourage the use of e-mail and other common electronic communications with KiwiSaver members.

InvestmentLink has urged the Government to take into account the fact that most new members of the KiwiSaver scheme would like to receive information by electronic means such as email or text messaging.

Using the Australian experience as the basis of his comments, InvestmentLink’s Philip said. "The impact of not adopting sophisticated infrastructure at the outset will be felt for years to come, as the cost of processing the mountains of paper will be crippling to KiwiSaver providers - these costs will be passed on to KiwiSaver members – effectively lowering investment returns."

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