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From today, millions of Australians will receive a boost to their superannuation balances as compulsory employer contributions rise from 10-10.5%.

The scheduled superannuation guarantee increase marks the latest bump in the legislated target to reach 12% of wages by July 2025. The increase will net the average Australian worker around $312 more a year or an extra $15,000 at retirement.

Meanwhile, other superannuation changes to come into effect today include the removal of the $450 month threshold to be eligible for payments.

In a statement, Treasurer Jim Chalmers said the superannuation increase would make a meaningful difference for millions of Australians and that the Labor party would continue to fight to strengthen the scheme.

“Today’s increase to 10.5% is just another step on the way to a legislated 12% by 2025,” he said.

“When the full increase is achieved, it will deliver an extra $76,000 to the typical Australian worker in retirement.”

While welcoming the changes, with the average worker running out of retirement savings 10 years before the end of their life, there is still a long way to go before superannuation is universal, fair, and secure, ACTU President Michele O’Neil argued.

The Albanese government must ensure that the superannuation guarantee continues to rise and reaches its mandated 12% by 2025, she said.

“Our superannuation system is the envy of the world, but constant work is required to ensure that it continues to improve and delivers a secure retirement for every worker.

“Women continue to retire with half the amount of men and workers are running out of savings roughly ten years before the end of their life. First Nations workers are retiring with even less. In order to make sure that the system provides the security that it promises, it is essential that superannuation is paid on every dollar earned, to every worker and achieves equal retirement outcomes.”

With the compulsory superannuation guarantee celebrating its 30th anniversary, Ms O’Neil said unions would continue to campaign to improve and defend the landmark scheme.

“An essential step to tackle women retiring with half the superannuation as men, is to close the gender pay gap and pay superannuation on every dollar earnt, including parental leave. We look forward to working with the Albanese Government to ensure retirement equality.”

According to Industry Super Australia, the biggest winners from today’s increase will be women on lower incomes. Almost 55% of the extra super payments will go to those under 40 – and more people in their 20s will get a super boost than any other age bracket. Two thirds of those benefitting from the increase earn less than $70,000 a year.

“Even though the staged increases are small, they’ll add up to so much more in savings and that means a more secure future for millions of Australians,” Industry Super Australia Chief Executive Bernie Dean said.