APRA is gearing up for its new gatekeeping powers for approving changes to controlling stakes of superannuation licensees, having released a draft form and guide for applications for consultation.
The documents cover parties looking to acquire greater than a 15 per cent stake in a registrable superannuation entity (RSE) licensee.
The process will bring the body’s ownership powers in the super sector in line with that of banking and insurance.
The consultation will be open for two weeks until 5 July, also when APRA will gain authority to approve all major stakeholder changes.
APRA deputy chair Helen Rowell said the regulator actively sought these powers to better protect the interests of superannuation members.
“APRA has longstanding concerns about the ability of parties to gain control of a superannuation licensee through the ‘back door’, without meeting the requirements of a stringent approval process,” Ms Rowell said.
“These concerns were heightened after this loophole contributed to the fraud that precipitated the collapse of Trio Capital in 2009.
“The closure of this legislative gap will ensure anyone seeking to acquire a substantial stake in an APRA-regulated superannuation licensee is subject to rigorous regulatory scrutiny.”
Before granting approval, APRA will be charged with checking the revised ownership structure will not impede the ability of the RSE licensee to meet its obligations under the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993, including prioritising the best interests of members.
The change of control application form seeks information about the applicant, including their motivation in seeking to acquire a stake in the RSE licensee.
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
Sarah has a dual bachelor's degree in science and journalism from the University of Queensland.
You can contact her on [email protected].
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