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4 day countdown to financial services reform legislation.

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The Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Senator the Hon Ian Campbell, today alerted the impending commencement on 11 March 2002 of the Government's Financial Services Reforms.

Senator Campbell noted that industry participants would need to carefully consider their needs and business strategies, and adopt appropriate planning arrangements to prepare for a smooth transition.

These reforms represent the culmination of many years of effort and consultation between Government and industry, and will place Australia at the cutting edge in financial services regulation.

The reforms introduced by the Financial Services Reform Act 2001 will establish a regulatory framework for the financial services industry that applies a consistent set of laws to the licensing, disclosure and conduct requirements for our markets and participants in the industry.

Importantly, by removing a range of inflexible and inconsistent regulatory approaches, both consumers and businesses stand to gain real benefits over time.

"The financial services reforms that commence next Monday represent an important step forward in the regulation of Australia's financial services industry.

"The reforms will enhance the operation of our industry and ensure that our regulatory framework is not only on a par with, but better than most others operating around the world," Senator Campbell said.

Senator Campbell noted that following extensive consultations with industry, a start-up date of 11 March 2002 was agreed, with most measures subject to a two-year transitional period to spread the impact on small business over a manageable period.

"The Government has greatly appreciated the co-operative and constructive approach of industry throughout the development of these reforms, and we look forward to continuing this relationship during the transitional phase of the reforms.

'The Government is committed to ensuring a smooth transition to the new regime and will be monitoring developments, with a view to fine-tuning the arrangements if necessary," Senator Campbell said.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has already conducted a large number of seminars and issued a wide range of information to assist in the implementation of the reforms.

This information can be accessed through the 'financial services' link on the ASIC website at In addition, all of the regulations associated with the reforms can be located under

the 'FSR regulations' link on the Treasury website at

CANBERRA 7 March 2002

Contact: Tammie Webb, Senator Campbell's Office 08 9325 4227 or 0417 400 227


© Commonwealth of Australia 2000