The Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation, Bill Shorten, today welcomed the passage of the Corporations Amendment (Simple Corporate Bonds and Other Measures) Bill 2013 through the House of Representatives.
The Bill implements reforms that promote a deep and liquid corporate bond market and enshrine the terms ‘financial adviser’ and ‘financial planner’ in Corporations Law.
The reforms in this Bill deliver on the Government’s commitment to reduce the regulatory burdens and barriers to issuing corporate bonds to retail investors.
Once the Bill receives passage through the Senate companies will be able to issue bonds by releasing a shorter offer-specific prospectus as long as they have released a base prospectus in the last three years.
The reforms also represent another major milestone in the Government’s long term commitment to encourage the development of a deep and liquid corporate bond market.
The establishment of a deep and liquid corporate bond in Australia is a key priority for this Government.
An effective retail corporate bond market will provide an alternative funding source for Australian companies and increase competitive pressure on lending rates to businesses. These reforms will go a substantial way to achieving this goal.
The amendments enshrining the terms ‘financial adviser’ and ‘financial planner’ and similar terms will enhance consumer protections by making it easier for Australian consumers to identify genuine providers of financial product advice.
The amendments will make it an offence for a person to hold themselves out to be an authorised financial adviser or financial planner when they are not, or to use terms of similar importance, thereby helping to protect consumers against property spruikers and other unlicensed operators.
The financial advice industry has welcomed these amendments as a historic reform that will benefit both consumers and industry, and will strengthen the benefits of the Government’s Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) reform package.
Minister Shorten’s Media Contact: Sam Casey 0421 697 660