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Government tables new ASIC funding bill

By Reporter
3 minute read

The legislation that will enable ASIC’s new industry funding model has been tabled in Federal Parliament.

The ASIC Supervisory Cost Recovery Levy Bill 2017, introduced to Parliament today by the government, sets out to "recover ASIC’s regulatory costs from the entities that create the need for regulation", according to Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O'Dwyer.

“This is the next step in implementing the government's commitment to recover ASIC’s regulatory costs from the entities that create the need for regulation, rather than the Australian taxpayers, who too often bear the costs of financial sector misconduct,” Ms O’Dwyer said.

The minister said industry funding for ASIC will increase transparency, making the industry more accountable for its behaviour and making ASIC a stronger regulator.

“It is a critical component of the Turnbull government’s plan to improve consumer outcomes in the financial services sector, and builds on other measures, including the $127.2 million ASIC funding package, to enhance the regulator’s data analytics and surveillance capabilities, to facilitate proactive enforcement activities and to accelerate other consumer protection measures recommended as part of the Financial System Inquiry," Ms O'Dwyer said.

Other measures that the ASIC funding model will build on include: a comprehensive review of ASIC’s enforcement regime to ensure the regulator has the powers and penalties available to it to deter misconduct and foster consumer confidence, as well as the ASIC Capability Review, which was undertaken to ensure that ASIC is operating in line with global best practice, the minister said.

“The government appreciates industry’s continued engagement throughout the development of the industry funding model. The government expects to release draft regulations providing greater detail on the operation of the model for consultation in the coming weeks,” Ms O'Dwyer said.

In November 2016, the government released a proposals paper for a new ASIC funding model, which shows the advice sector will be levied $24 million to refund the regulator, or $960 per financial adviser. An exposure draft for the bill was released last month, setting out the penalties AFSLs could face under the model.

In its recent submission to Treasury, the FPA expressed concerns with the funding model saying it "will create a large burden on small businesses" and that it is concerned with the lack of detail and transparency involved in the consultation process.

"The FPA has grave concerns at the lack of transparency being created with the consultation process Treasury is undertaking at this time, when consumers will bear the ultimate cost of this funding framework," the FPA said.

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