Licensing for financial service intermediaries
An address by Ian Johnston, ASIC's Executive Director, Financial Services Reform to the IBNA conference, Darwin, 12 September 2002.
Good morning and thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today.
My topic is licensing, but I also propose to address financial services reform more generally: not so much from a technical aspect, but rather addressing how and why this framework of regulation was arrived at, what our expectations of industry are, our experience with licencing to date and also touch on some topical FSRA issues for the General Insurance industry.
Let's start by revisiting how FSRA came about. In 1996 the Australian Government established an Inquiry into the Australian Financial System to review the significant changes to the regulatory framework since the Campbell Committee Inquiry in 1981. The 'Wallis' Inquiry, as it became known, was to review these developments, consider the factors likely to drive further change, and to make recommendations for possible further improvements to the regulatory arrangements.
The Treasurer provided the following mission statement:
'The Inquiry is charged with providing a stocktake of the results arising from the financial deregulation of the Australian financial system since the early 1980s. The forces driving further change will be analysed, in particular, technological development.
Recommendations will be made on the nature of the regulatory arrangements that will best
ensure an efficient, responsive, competitive and flexible financial system to underpin stronger economic performance, consistent with financial stability, prudence, integrity and fairness.'