Government releases “ambitious” legislative timeline

by Madison Utley20 Aug 2019

Yesterday, the “implementation roadmap” for the royal commission recommendations directed at the government was released to the public.

The timeline has 90% of the commitments implemented or introduced into parliament within one year’s time, with the remainder set to follow before the end of 2020.

Creating and enacting a best interest duty for mortgage brokers is among the legislation to be consulted on and introduced by the end of 2019.

“Around 60% of mortgages are written by mortgage brokers and they play a critical part in our economy and in our community. We want obviously for them to be acting in the best interests of their customers,” said Frydenberg, who went on to add that how best interest duty plays out will significantly impact the remuneration review in three years' time.

According to the treasurer, this is “the most significant and far-reaching set of reforms to the financial services sector in three decades.”

“We’re moving in record time,” he said.

Australia’s banks have welcomed the recently released timetable, according to the Australian Banking Association (ABA).

Of the 76 recommendations arising from the royal commission, 54 were directed at the government and eight were specifically aimed at the banking industry.

ABA CEO, Anna Bligh, said that the six changes to the Banking Code called for by the relevant recommendations are underway. 

“The ABA has already drafted provisions implementing five of the changes, had them agreed to by banks and submitted them to the regulators for approval. These are now on track for full implementation by March 2020,” she added.

“Make no mistake, banks understand what the community and government expects of them and are raising their standards to rightly meet those expectations.”

Bligh also said that many Australian banks have reviewed their internal culture, restructured staff remuneration, and refocused on customer outcomes.

“Banks understand that effective cultural change is not going to come about through implementing the royal commission recommendations alone. It will only be achieved by putting the customer at the heart of every decision our banks make,” Bligh added.