O’Dwyer scathing of industry funds governance report

The Minister for Revenue and Financial Services has issued a scathing assessment of the industry fund's governance report produced by former Reserve Bank Governor, Bernie Fraser, claiming it took 15 months to arrive at status quo.

The minister said that after almost 15 months the report represented a let-down for those in the industry who believed in the value of having independent directors on the boards of superannuation funds that control $2.1 trillion of Australians' compulsory superannuation savings.

"I am pleased that Industry Super Australia (ISA) and the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) have finally conceded to the release of Mr Fraser's report, but it is a shame it has been exposed for what it always was, a lobbying document to kill off legislation that applies equally across the entire sector in December, 2015," she said.

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O'Dwyer said she believed the report had represented nothing more than a delaying tactic to stop reforms to superannuation governance which had been in the pipeline since 2015.

"Given that it recommends adoption of the AIST's draft code of governance which appears to at best entrench the status quo and at worst further dilute the value of independent directors on superannuation fund boards, what is clear from this almost 15-month review is that we could have had very reasonable independence requirements legislated since 2015," the minister said.

"There is nothing in this report that negates the need for legislation to lift the standard of accountability, transparency and choice across the entire superannuation sector."

"I look forward to working constructively with the Opposition, the crossbench senators and my colleagues to ensure the Turnbull Government can deliver on its commitment to put members' interests ahead of the self-interest in the superannuation sector," O'Dwyer said.

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