Winston Peters has scuppered Labour’s big play on super annuation by putting the raising of the age of eligibility of superannuation:
Maintaining the age of eligibility for superannuation at 65 would be a bottom line for New Zealand First in any coalition negotiations after the 2014 election, says leader Winston Peters.
His stance could be an obstacle to coalition talks with Labour if NZ First is the kingmaker after 2014 – Labour has made raising the pension age to 67 a centrepiece of its policies and has sought to embarrass Prime Minister John Key on the issue.
Mr Key has been under pressure for refusing to contemplate raising the age of eligibility for super from 65 to 67.
NZ First meets for its annual conference in Palmerston North this weekend – its first since the resurgent party made it back into Parliament last year with eight MPs. It is looking for more next election and could be a strong contender for coalition talks in 2014.
Asked whether NZ First’s position that the super age should remain at 65 was likely to be an issue in such talks, Mr Peters said: “Of course it’s a bottom line.”
Unfortunately though something is going to have give. No longer can political parties pretend that universal entitlement to superannuation is able to continue. When I was talking with Larry Williams and Sean Plunket on the issue this week Sean Plunket thought that if the age of eligibility remained then access to the Gold Card was means tested or removed entirely until an upper limit.
I believe that universality is the issue not the age…it is patently ridiculous to pay super to everyone regardless of means. We don’t do that anywhere else int eh welfare system so why in old age? Anyone who supports universality is likely to be self motivated.