House of Representatives Committees

Standing Committee on Economics, Finance and Public Administration

Reviews of the 1995-96 annual reports of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Australian Securities Commission and the Insurance and Superannuation Commission

Media release, 29 September 1997

MAKING THE REGULATORS ACCOUNTABLE

The House of Representatives Standing on Financial Institutions and Public Administration today tabled its report on the review of the 1995-96 annual reports of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Australian Securities Commission and the Insurance and Superannuation Commission.

David Hawker, Chairman of the Committee, said that accountability of the financial regulators and transparency in their decision making is vital for the efficient operation of the financial services industry.

"The importance of the financial services industry to the economy and the relationship between service providers and their customers requires an open regulatory regime."

"The examination of the policies and procedures of the regulators at a public forum is a significant step in improving accountability to the Parliament and the community," Mr Hawker said.

The Committee's report canvasses a range of issues related to the operations of each of the regulators including:

"The Committee has also drawn attention to the critical importance of the relationship between the RBA and the proposed new prudential regulator and has recommended that the new regulator be required to appear before the Committee to complement the RBA's appearances."

Mr Hawker added, "The Committee identified a number of issues which will be canvassed at the November hearing with the RBA including interest rate margins which have not declined in most areas of lending."

Ends 29 September 1997
Further information: David Hawker MP (Chairman) Parliament House (02) 6277 4100
Christopher Paterson (Inquiry Secretary) (02) 6277 4587

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