10 March 2004

Single Figure Disclosure for Super Fees and Charges

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, the Hon Ross Cameron MP, announced that he has taken steps today to resolve a long standing impasse over simple fee disclosure for investment based financial products, such as superannuation funds.

The Government wishes to expedite and bring to an effective conclusion current industry discussions on this matter.

"I have written to the Chief Executive Officers of the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) and the Investment and Financial Services Association (IFSA) to seek a resolution", said Mr Cameron.

"I expect that through constructive industry engagement that we will be able to achieve an enhanced fee disclosure and, in particular better consumer comprehension and comparability of competing products.

"I have asked for the bodies to come to the Government within one month with an agreed single figure fee disclosure model. The Government will then prepare regulations by 1 July incorporating the proposed model in the relevant disclosure documents

Mr Cameron emphasised that the Government does not have a predisposition toward any existing model proposed by any single industry group.

"I note that there are substantive issues and practical difficulties to overcome with existing models that would need to be addressed and satisfactorily resolved", stated Mr Cameron.

In the event that industry groups are unable to come to an agreement, the Government will move forward itself on an appropriate single figure fee disclosure model based on achieving the best outcome for consumers.