The Australian Labor Party will add industry consultation into the process it uses to consider legislation following Hayne royal commission recommendations, Labor MP and Shadow Assistant Financial Services Minister Matt Thistlethwaite told Professional Planner’s Risk Advice Summit in Sydney on Tuesday.

“We’d like to do some kind of consultation with the industry and have some kind of inquiry to hear the views of the industry and set that up through the Senate,” Thistlethwaite said during a moderated Q&A onstage with former Labor MP, Bernie Ripoll.

Thistlethwaite’s comments were made against the backdrop of the securities regulator’s mandate to collect data relating to quality of advice and appropriateness of insurance cover in advance of a review to start in 2021 to determine whether commissions on risk advice will be legislated to zero. Hayne mandated the ASIC review and both sides of politics have conveyed their intent to implement all of Hanye’s 76 recommendations.

Thistlethwaite described further: “We might not oppose legislation in the house, but we’d allow it to go through to the Senate for that inquiry to be set up. That’s generally the opportunity to directly interact, not only with the major parties but with the cross-benchers to give your views on regulation,” he said.

Following the re-election of the Liberal Party during the Federal Election in May, Thistlethwaite said the opposition implemented a full review of its policy, a process that has led to the party deciding to conduct more consultation with industry through its legislation implementation process.

Thistlethwaite pointed to the Senate committee process as the best place for industry to have its voice heard, along with direct contact with the relevant elected representatives in respective electorates.

Further, Thistlethwaite highlighted the importance of the Labor’s consultation priorities given the representation of power in the Senate.

“You will all know the government no longer has a majority in the Senate, through that change legislation can be blocked so those cross-benchers are pretty important and Labor has a dialogue with them,” he said.

On the sidelines of the conference, FPA CEO Dante De Gori commented on the importance of industry participants and representative bodies to work closely with policy makers on all sides given the timing of the completion of ASIC’s review will coincide with the lead up to another federal election cycle.

“You never know who in the government will carry the deciding vote or have the final say,’ De Gori said. “At the end of the day we have to make sure we are working with all sides of politics.”

Smith is head of content and managing editor of Professional Planner and Investment Magazine.
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