This information paper has its origins in the Council of Federal Financial Relations, and is intended to support consideration of opportunities to improve regulatory administration and compliance through technology.
- Regulatory technology (‘regtech’) is the use of technology to better achieve regulatory objectives. Used well, it can support the improved targeting of regulation and reduce the costs of administration and compliance.
- While regtech can improve regulatory outcomes and reduce costs, it is not a substitute for regulatory reform. Indeed, as regtech is intended to make the task of regulating easier, advances in technology heighten the onus on policy makers to ensure the need for, and design of, regulation are soundly‑based.
- Australia is viewed as being comparatively well‑placed internationally for widespread adoption of regtech. Yet, with the exception of financial system applications, extensive use of regtech remains relatively uncommon.
- There is potential scope in Australia to extend existing low‑tech solutions — including digitised data, forms, registers and transactions. These could reduce compliance costs for individuals and businesses, improve the efficiency of regulator practices, and generate flow‑on benefits for the community.
- Leading‑edge regtech involves the use of data for predictive analytics and real time monitoring, enabling better regulatory outcomes and potentially fewer compliance burdens for businesses. But advanced regtech requires specialised resources and long development times.