The country's KiwiSaver coffers could get a massive influx of capital next year if new rules are passed allowing New Zealanders with retirement savings in Australia to repatriate their funds.
Draft legislation in Australia looks to allow the transfer of retirement savings between certain Australian superannuation funds and New Zealand KiwiSaver schemes, effective as of July 1.
The move could be a major boon for the savers as any increase in the funds under management would probably result in a reduction in fees due to economies of scales.
The announcement has been welcomed by the Workplace Savings Group, which said it fulfils a bilateral agreement signed by Finance Minister Bill English and Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan in 2009.
"The upside of trans-Tasman portability will enhance the movement of labour between the two countries by helping people streamline and consolidate their retirement savings in their country of residence," said Workplace Savings executive director Bruce Kerr.
"That includes assisting Kiwis who have worked in Australia and who have returned to live in New Zealand to consolidate their Australian superannuation accounts into KiwiSaver."
In the past year 50,000 New Zealanders moved to Australia, and approximately 14,000 people living in Australia moved to New Zealand, he said.