Are you looking forward to retirement?

The big picture

The big picture

The three-yearly Review of Retirement Income Policies is now underway. It asks those big questions, and we want to hear from you.

Consider this:

  • Between now and 2060 the number of people aged 65+ will double.
  • 1 in 4 New Zealanders will be over 65.
  • As soon as 2028, those aged 65+ will outnumber children aged 0-14 for the first time.
  • This is because we’re living longer, and having fewer babies.
  • Since the 1960s, the life expectancy for men has increased from 68 to 79; for women it’s gone up from 73 to 83.
  • A child born today can expect to live to their 90s.
  • At the same the time, the number of babies born has declined from a high of 4.3 per woman in the 1960s, to 1.8 today.

That means fewer workers paying tax to support the elderly in the future.

  • In 20 years, the ratio of people aged 15-64 to those aged 65+ will decline from 4 to 1, to 2 to 1.
  • In the same time, the cost of NZ Super will triple from $39 million a day now, to $120 million a day.
  • The Government’s Super Fund will only cover a fraction of that - 0.5% in 2035 rising to a maximum of 12% in 2078.

Today’s Super is paid out of today’s taxes – the same taxes that pay for health, education, law and order and everything else the government funds.

Will our economy grow enough to cover the rising cost of Super? Or does the government need to find a way to cover the cost – raise taxes? Spend less in other areas like health and education? Borrow more?

Tell us what you think

The Review of Retirement Income Policies is asking these questions, and others to do with KiwiSaver, work, home ownership, and how to make our savings last through a retirement that could stretch for 30 years.

We’re getting new research done to inform our recommendations to government and will post results here as they come in.

We also want to hear from individual New Zealanders. Tell us what you think should change to ensure we all have a good standard of living as we age, both now and in the future.

Submissions are open until October 31.