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Senate casts doubt on proposed changes to lending laws

Media Release
Nick McKim 9 Nov 2020

Media Release: Senate casts doubt on proposed changes to lending laws

November 9, 2020

The Senate today supported a Greens motion condemning the government for abandoning the key recommendation of the Banking Royal Commission.

“The Senate has today cast doubt on whether the government has the numbers to tear up responsible lending obligations, which was one of its major budget announcements,” Greens Economic Justice spokesperson Senator Nick McKim said.

“The motion before the Senate highlighted that the government’s proposed changes to consumer credit laws are inconsistent with the first recommendation of the Royal Commission.”

“The government accepted this recommendation when it was handed down last year. Now they are abandoning it."

“I thank the Senate for joining the Greens in condemning the government."

“The Greens urge fellow Senators to abide by the Royal Commission’s recommendation and reject the Government’s Bill that would make it easier for the banks to trap people into unsustainable levels of debt.”

Text of Senate motion:

  1. Notes that, in respect of responsible lending to consumers, and the provisions of the National Consumer Credit Protection (NCCP) Act 2009 in particular, the final report of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry:
    a. noted that there was little or no debate about the terms of the NCCP Act;
    b. emphasised that the submission from Treasury stated that abidance by existing laws would likely enhance rather than detract from macroeconomic performance; and
    c. concluded simply that the law should be applied as it stands;
  2. Notes that the Government, in February 2019:
    a. accepted Recommendation 1.1 of the Royal Commission that the NCCP Act not be amended to alter the obligation to assess unsuitability; and
    b. agreed to take action in relation to all 76 recommendations of the Royal Commission; and
  1. Notes that the Government has reneged on its previous acceptance of Recommendation 1.1 of the Royal Commission; and
  2. Condemns the Government for failing to honour its acceptance of Recommendation 1.1 of the Royal Commission.
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