23 August 2016
Sydney, 23 August 2016: Today’s revelation by Manager of Opposition Business, Tony Burke MP, that Labor intends to use its proposed royal commission to test the strength of the Government’s one-seat majority proves Labor’s motivations are purely political.
Australian Bankers’ Association Chief Executive Steven Münchenberg said: “It says a lot that Labor has not produced a terms of reference in the four months since it first called for a royal commission – yet has clearly locked down its use as a political tactic against the Government.”
Mr Burke warned the Government that Labor intends to move Parliamentary motions for a suspension of standing orders in favour of a debate and vote on the proposed inquiry when Parliament resumes next week.
“Labor has made all sorts of claims for a royal commission but clearly the real reason is just to attack the Government. It is disappointing that this political tactic risks undermining confidence in our banking system which sits at the core of the economy, at a time of growing global uncertainty.
“In the meantime, banks will get on with implementing comprehensive new measures to protect customer interests, increase transparency and accountability and build trust and confidence in banks.”
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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.