Morrison cites power of BEAR on Commbank CEO appointment

The Federal Treasurer, Scott Morrison has confirmed he was prewarned of the Commonwealth Bank’s decision to appoint Matt Comyn as its new chief executive.

However, while Morrison confirmed he had been informed of the appointment prior to its public announcement, he stopped short of endorsing the bank’s decision and referenced the impending passage of the legislation underpinning the Government’s Bank Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR).

Speaking on national radio, the Treasurer confirmed that the chairperson of the Commonwealth Bank, Catherine Livingstone had phoned him and told him of the decision and the process which had been followed.

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He made clear however that the Board needed to take responsibility for the appointment.

“I've said the other day, I wish him well, I sent him a message to that effect,” Morrison said. “He's got a very important job in the Australian economy.”

“Last night the accountability legislation for banking executives passed the House of Representatives and that will go through the Senate as well. That is my view when it comes to executive accountability in the banking sector, it's not just an opinion, it's soon to be law.”

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