Regulator changes announced in Budget

The 2014-2015 Commonwealth Budget contains changes affecting regulators:

The Government will conduct scoping studies into the possible privatisation of the Registry function of ASIC.

The Government announced the cessation of the Private Health Insurance Administration Council (PHIAC). The price monitoring functions of PHIAC will be merged into the ACCC. The prudential regulation of health funds functions of PHIAC will be merged into APRA. The winding up of the Council will be implemented through 2014-15.

The Private Health Insurance Industry Ombudsman will be merged into the Office of the Commonwealth Ombudsman.

Source: Finance Minister’s media release

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (“OAIC”) will be disbanded from 1 January 2015.

The FOI Act will be administered jointly: by the Attorney‑General’s Department (advice, guidelines, annual reporting), the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (merits review) and the Commonwealth Ombudsman (complaints). The information policy advice function currently discharged by the OAIC will cease.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner will be established as a separate statutory office within the Australian Human Rights Commission and will continue to be responsible for the exercise of statutory functions under the Privacy Act 1988 and related legislation.

Source: Attorney General’s media release.

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