On 4 February, the Government released its response to the landmark Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry. My full statement can be read here. The Government’s response can be read here.
The Government is taking action on all 76 recommendations contained within the Royal Commission’s Final Report and in a number of important areas is going further. In his report, Commissioner Hayne has recognised the many significant actions the Government has already taken.
In outlining the Government’s response to the Royal Commission, the Government’s principal focus is on restoring trust in our financial system and delivering better consumer outcomes, while maintaining the flow of credit and continuing to promote competition. These objectives are vitally important to the health of the economy and therefore to the health of our community.
Commissioner Hayne’s recommendations and the Government’s response advance the interests of consumers in four key ways. First, they strengthen and expand the protections for consumers, small business and rural and remote communities. Second, they raise accountability and governance standards. Third, they enhance the effectiveness of regulators. Fourth, they provide for remediation for those harmed by misconduct.
For the first time the Government will establish a compensation scheme of last resort to ensure that consumers can have their case heard and be confident that where compensation is owed it will be paid. This will be a scheme paid for by industry reflecting their obligation to right their wrongs.
The Government is confident that the actions we have announced will put in place the legislative framework necessary, providing the regulators with the powers and the resources to hold those who abuse our trust to account. In doing so the community’s trust in our financial sector can and will be restored.