Knowledge Note

The Australian Government commissioned the independent Financial System Inquiry or ‘Murray Review’ to provide recommendations to improve private pensions (superannuation), as well as financial system resilience, innovation and consumer protection. This continues Australia’s proactive approach - regularly reviewing how to improve a system that already has good features. The recommendation for a clear (and legally binding) statement of what the retirement system is trying to achieve is a sensible move. It mirrors what is happening in a range of World Bank projects, to start with the long-run outcomes and then work backwards to find the best ways to achieve them, in terms of regulation, supervision, market structure and efficient infrastructure. This note reviews the key analysis and recommendations from the review of the private pension system in Australia known as the ‘Murray Review’. It provides a commentary on the implications for pension reforms using World Bank experience in a range of projects.

About the Presenters

William Price

William Price is a Senior Financial Sector Specialist at the World Bank. He focuses on pension system design, governance, regulation and supervision to improve coverage of good quality pensions and increase assets to fund long-term investments. Work ranges from leading country projects in all regions and research on regional and global issues.

Previously he was Head of Policy at the UK's Pensions Regulator and at the UK Finance Ministry he was Private Secretary to the Chancellor, Head of Assets, Savings and Wealth and worked on development there and at DFID. In his previous and current roles he works closely with both the OECD and the International Organization of Pension Supervisors (IOPS), and is on the Advisory Boards of the Toronto Centre Programme for Insurance and Pensions and the World Bank’s 401(k) pension plan. He has degrees in Economics from Oxford University and University College London and is a member of the Royal Economic Society and Chartered Institute of Insurance.