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Accountants baulk at funding AUSTRAC changes

Mike Taylor20 June 2024
Dead piggy bank

At the same time as financial advisers continue to express concern about the ASIC levy, accountants have sent a clear message to the Government that new arrangements within AUSTRAC need to be funded from the public purse.

The major accounting organisations have acknowledged that upcoming changes to the AUSTRAC regime will see more entities being covered by the regulator but arguing that this is a cost that needs to be carried by the Government, not accountants.

“We reiterate our position that the structure of the current industry levy, which applies to large reporting entities, should not change with the inclusion of tranche-two entities. Exponentially increasing the number of reporting entities will benefit all Australians so it is appropriate that the costs of the supervisor, AUSTRAC, should be primarily funded by all Australians,” Chartered Accountants ANZ, CPA Australia and the Institute of Public Accountants have told the Attorney General, Mark Dreyfus.

“We acknowledge that the government has allocated funds in the recent budget to aid the implementation of tranche-two. We refer to advice provided by Mr Thomas [AUSTRAC CEO, Brendan Thomas] in the recent Senate Estimates on how the government’s provision of $166 million over the coming two years to prepare for tranche-two implementation will be utilised,” the accounting bodies said.

“Mr Thomas advised that ‘Most of that money is coming to AUSTRAC for us to prepare for that implementation, in terms of data systems, the uplifting of staff and the investments that we’ll be making in terms of education, training and engagement with industry’,” it said.

“We look for the government to continue to provide the funds sought by AUSTRAC and the Attorney-General’s Department over future budgets to enable a smooth transition of the proposed reforms,” the major accounting groups said.

Mike Taylor

Mike Taylor

Managing Editor/Publisher, Financial Newswire

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Wildcat
26 days ago

Accountants….welcome to the dystopian world of planners. A world where the costs of governing 10’s of millions of people is borne by just 15,000 of it’s citizens. We have been doing this crap for years (AML/ASUTRAC), paying ASIC levies, have the sword of Damocles hanging over our heads in CLSR. We are so beaten down I wonder why our numbers are still falling?

Govt Theft
26 days ago
Reply to  Wildcat

Accountants are Jack of Govt Red Tape crap and charges and have voted with their feet and wallets and 95% have abandoned the Limited AFSL’s.
Thus voted not to pay ASIC Levies, not pay CSLR Levies, to not have to restart Uni under FARSEA and not be threatened by Kangaroo court AFCA.

And accountants have never once been busted for the bucket loads of illegal AFSL advice they provide.
Not once ever.

XTA
26 days ago

Another example of the government adding more quasi taxes to business owners, meanwhile the public sector grows more. At what point is this costing the Australian economy dearly, if not already.