The federal opposition has concerns that the proposed changes to the FOFA regime recently released by the government may result in reduced consumer protection and a drop in professional standards.
Bernie Ripoll, the Shadow Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation said that, “it would consider any changes put forward by the government appropriately.” He conceded that the Opposition would, “consider if these changes reduce consumer protection and anything that reduces professional standards.”
The Shadow Minister’s remarks are in response to the set of FOFA draft regulations and legislation for consultation that Assistant Treasurer Arthur Sinodinos recently released.
Ripoll confirmed that the opposition would be srutinising in particular the best interest provisions and conflicted remuneration reforms as he claims that the industry has been, “screaming out for a lift of the standards.” Ripoll has also suggested that his Government was responsible for all the ground work and raising the standards of financial services industry commenting that,“ I would expect the industry will see these changes as making life easier for them, but there needs to be a balance between this and the need for professionalism and consumer protection.”
Although the release of the draft amendments, has been widely welcomed by the financial services industry the definitive piece of legislation is not expected to be approved until the end of 2014.