BEAR-like accountability regimes for ASIC and APRA

  • By Christine St Anne

Akin to the Bank Accountability and Executive Regime, both the corporate and prudential regulator announced revamped accountability frameworks.

The announcement is part of the recommendations from the Royal Commission which said that “each of APRA and ASIC should internally formulate and apply to its own management accountability principles of the kind established by the BEAR.”

In fact, under the Royal Commission recommendations, the BEAR was expanded to cover all financial services sector.

APRA’s internal governance and accountability arrangements and is supported by individual accountability statements for senior executive roles and an accountability map.

The accountability statements cover all four APRA Members, as well as APRA’s six executive directors, APRA’s chief risk officer and chief internal auditor.

“Embracing the principles of BEAR presents an opportunity for APRA to demonstrate that we seek to uphold standards of governance and accountability that are consistent with those we expect of the financial institutions we regulate,” APRA chair Wayne Byres said.

Indeed, it was only this week, when the prudential regulator announced that it could trigger the BEAR in its latest inquiry in the Westpac AML fallout.

 Under ASIC’s new accountability framework, an updated committee structure has been put in place to strengthen oversight of executive actions and assist the ASIC in the performance of its responsibilities.

ASIC has also implemented accountability statements for executive directors and commissioners that identify core responsibilities and individual accountabilities.

“The update reflects the importance ASIC places on transparency, regulatory integrity and effective oversight and management of its functions and responsibilities,” ASIC chair James Shipton said.