Pension age rise still on budget books

An independent agency says the Turnbull government still intends to lift the pension qualifying age. (AAP)

The Parliamentary Budget Office says a rise in the pension age to 70 was not a list of dumped zombie measures in the budget.

The Turnbull government still intends to lift the age pension qualifying age to 70, an independent agency has confirmed.

Parliamentary Budget Officer Phil Bowen told a Senate committee on Monday not all of the so-called "zombie" savings measures from the 2014 budget had been taken off the books.

While the government gave up on about $13 billion of budget savings measures which failed to get through the Senate, he said it remained committed to four measures including raising the age pension age and the energy supplement which flows to welfare recipients.

The other two measures were streamlining the court system and overhauling workplace compensation laws.

Mr Bowen said the PBO had decided not to release an updated report on unlegislated budget measures because there were so few left.

The PBO's last report on unlegislated measures estimated the budget saving of a pension age set at 70 of $1.96 billion between 2025 and 2027.

The office also confirmed it would release 10-year projections for federal government spending and revenue next month.

Mr Bowen, who retires in July, said the projections were an important follow-up to the federal budget released on May 9.

"If you are going to publish a bottom line you can't have a debate about it unless you know what is driving it," Mr Bowen told a Senate estimates committee on Monday.

The national fiscal outlook, which covers state government finances, is expected to be released in September or October.

Mr Bowen said his office was considering changes to the way it reports on political party promises after an election.

The post-election report - which now covers Labor, the coalition and the Greens - could be expanded to include minor policy costings.

However he said the PBO could not mandate small parties or independents to submit their costings to be analysed and published because the legislation set a limit of parties with five or more members of parliament.

He said given the "critical role" played by small parties especially in the Senate it would ideal for them to submit their policies for costing.

Asked whether the PBO should conduct the Intergenerational Report - a five-yearly analysis on future pressures on the budget - Mr Bowen said there was merit in an independent body being in charge of it.

"The PBO produces analyses that are based on purely objective analysis of data and our mandate is to be completely apolitical," he said.

"Any document that is prepared by the government of its nature has a political element, so if there is a desire to depoliticise the Intergenerational Report then a way to do that is to give it to an independent body."

Source AAP

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