Overview: As the national corporate, markets and financial services regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is involved in most areas of Australia's commercial world. With the limited resources available to it, ASIC should be commended for how it performs certain functions and many of the outcomes it has achieved. ASIC will never be able to do everything the community may expect of it. In some respects, nor should it. It would be unrealistic to expect that ASIC could be funded at a level where all breaches or allegations of misconduct were pursued. Despite this, the size and growth of Australia's financial sector and the fact that millions of Australians are involved in it, not least because of compulsory superannuation, makes it essential that modern and adaptable regulations are in place and regulators such as ASIC are at the top of their game. ASIC needs to ensure it sets appropriate priorities and that its actions encourage widespread compliance.
This report underlines the critical importance of ensuring that Australia has a robust corporate regulatory system under the stewardship of a strong and effective regulator.