Super fund governance code commissioned by ISA/AIST

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Industry Super Australia (ISA) and the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) have commissioned a governance code of conduct for not-for-profit superannuation funds.

ISA and AIST announced that former RBA Governor and Treasury Secretary Bernie Fraser would head a review to develop “a best practice governance code of conduct for not-for-profit super funds by 30 April 2016.”

Update: The AFR is reporting the review report has been delayed until after the federal election, and is likely to be dropped if the Labor party wins.

This came on the same day that Labor, the Greens and several independents in the Senate announced they would oppose the Government’s changes to super fund governance.

“The review will assess global best practice pension fund governance and develop a Code of Conduct which would be mandatory for ISA and AIST member funds and complement APRA prudential standards and guidance,” said a joint ISA-AIST statement.

“The code of conduct will preclude the need for legislation that would have dismantled the not-for- profit model of governance,” said Industry Super Australia CEO David Whiteley.

“The development of a best practice governance code of conduct for not-for-profit super funds will ensure our members can continue to have confidence in the way our funds are run, while avoiding heavy handed regulation that was unlikely to improve super fund governance,” said AIST CEO Tom Garcia.

Mr Whiteley said: “Bernie Fraser was one of the first independent trustees of industry super funds and is uniquely placed to lead this review. He understands what makes industry super funds tick, why they outperform, and what the foundation will be for their continued success for members.”

“Mr Fraser will oversee a review to formulate a rigorous governance code to ensure not-for-profit representative trustee funds continue to uphold the highest levels of governance, reflect the broad range of skills needed to retain a collaborative ‘all profits to members’ culture and ensure at all times that members’ interests are priori­tised.”

Update: The Scope of Review for the Fraser Governance Review has been released.

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