20 April 2016
Sydney, 20 April 2016: The Australian Bankers’ Association has today supported the expanded powers and increased resources for ASIC announced by the Federal Government.
“A well-resourced regulator keeps the industry accountable and helps to underpin a healthy, stable economy,” ABA Chief Executive Steven Münchenberg said.
“We support the introduction of a new industry funding model for ASIC. It’s important that contributions are transparent and that the amount of fees levied matches the level of regulation and resources required for ASIC.
“Aligning the new funding model with the expanded role of ASIC will also be important to ensure regulation is effective, efficient and necessary,” he said.
“The extension of Mr Greg Medcraft’s term as Chair will help continuity with the range of reforms affecting the banking and financial services industry, in particular the implementation of recommendations from the Financial System Inquiry.
“The banking industry supports, in principle, the product intervention power for ASIC to bolster consumer protections. However, we need to be wary of any action that may have unintended consequences and adversely impact on product innovation or consumer choice.
“We also support a new obligation on product manufacturers, including banks and other financial institutions, to ensure design and distribution of financial products meets the needs of all consumers.”
“The ABA looks forward to progressing the Government’s reform agenda and working with ASIC to enhance consumer protections.
“Australia’s banks will continue to ensure customers are treated fairly and receive the best possible outcomes. Expanding ASIC’s role is complementary to this,” Mr Münchenberg said.
Contact: Stephanie Arena 0477 470 677 or Nic Frankham 0435 963 913
Access to credit opens up opportunities and fulfills aspirations. Getting it right requires the right balance between consumer protections and the flow of credit.
Interviewed by AM’s Peter Ryan, ABA CEO Anna Bligh talked about the substantial drop in loan deferrals since their peak during the pandemic, falling from 900,000 to 300,000.