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Horizon scanning – regulatory developments in Australia

With so many developments on the horizon, the regulatory landscape in Australia can be difficult to navigate.

In our latest publication, we highlight the key upcoming and anticipated changes that should be top of mind for financial services institutions, including:

  • Replacement of the Banking Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR) by the Financial Accountability Regime (FAR): With Parliament recently reintroducing the Financial Accountability Regime Bill, the long awaited rollout of FAR looks likely for next year. The aim of the extended regime is to improve transparency and accountability in the banking, insurance and superannuation sectors.
  • Climate change financial risk: APRA’s recent climate-risk survey shows only a small portion of respondents had fully incorporated climate risk in their risk management framework. The results signal that there is more work to do in this evolving area of risk management.
  • Digital Currencies and Assets: The consultation process for the proposed Digital Assets (Market Regulation) Bill 2022 is underway. We can expect to see considerable uncertainty for industry participants until we have law that is fit for purpose in the Australian market for digital financial assets.
  • Privacy reforms: The Online Privacy Bill has been proposed to strengthen the Privacy Act 1988 and enable the introduction of a binding online privacy code for social media and other online platforms. If it is introduced, impacted organisations can expect more prescriptive obligations, in particular with respect to protecting personal information and consumer transparency and consent.
  • Foreign Financial Service Provider Licensing: To provide financial services in Australia, the correct licence or relief will need to be granted by the regulator.  New rules are proposed to apply from 31 March 2024.