ASIC to review processes following $188 million expense fallout

  • By AB+F Editorial

The corporate regulator is expected to review its internal processes in relation to expense payments following a review of the Australian National Audit Office.

ASIC chair James Shipton will step down pending the  review into $118,000 paid by the corporate regulator in relation to tax advice.

Shipton has agreed to repay the money he received for advice after he relocated from the US to Australia back in 2018.

The audit office highlighted concerns with $70,000 paid to deputy chair Daniel Crennan. The money was paid over two years to cover his relocation costs from Melbourne to Sydney.

Crennan will not step down but agreed to repay the money.

Shipton will also pay back ASIC the money he received for advice.

In a statement of Friday to a senate committee, Shipton said that ASIC anticipates the independent review will assist it to make appropriate changes to key policies and processes.

In the interim, he added that ASIC has implemented changes to procedures associated with approval of expenses relating to geographic relocation for statutory appointees to ensure that there is commission oversight of those expenses and that the arrangements for new statutory appointees are clearly documented prior to them being made.

“At all times during consideration of this matter I have been mindful of the need to avoid any conflict of interest,” Shipton said.

“I only took this position to serve the Australian community and to work to improve the corporate and financial system that should also serve it,” Shipton said.

“ If I any anyway impede that purpose, the right thing for me to do is to step aside until such time that I can. ASIC’s work protecting the Australian community must come first. It is far too important to jeopardise.

Deputy chair Karen Chester will be acting chair in the interim.