A bill which overhauls securities law to improve financial market conduct and restore investor confidence in New Zealand’s financial markets was introduced to Parliament today by Commerce Minister Simon Power.
The 560-page Financial Markets Conduct Bill is the result of a comprehensive review of securities law and takes into account the work of the Capital Markets Development Taskforce, the effects of the global financial crisis, and the failure of finance companies.
“Re-building investor confidence in our financial markets has been one of my main priorities as Minister of Commerce over the past three years," Mr Power said.
"We have done a lot of work on reforming regulation of the financial sector, including implementing the financial adviser regime, introducing auditor regulation and the licensing of trustees and statutory supervisors, and establishing the Financial Markets Authority – and this bill largely completes that."
Key proposals include:
“This bill seizes on a once-in-a generation opportunity to re-write our securities law – which has been subject to decades of ad hoc reform – in an integrated and coherent manner.
“It will play a crucial role in restoring investor confidence by providing better information and protections for mum and dad investors, as well as setting clearer rules for companies looking to raise capital.
“The reform of our securities law has been subject to extensive public consultation, including the release of a discussion document and a draft exposure bill, to ensure the legislation provides a robust and enduring framework for our capital markets.
“I’d like to thank the financial market industry for their constructive engagement during the design of this bill, and I expect that will continue as the bill makes its way through the parliamentary process.”
The bill replaces a number of pieces of legislation, including the Securities Act 1978, the Securities Markets Act, the Unit Trusts Act, the Superannuation Schemes Act, and the non-tax parts of the KiwiSaver Act.
Submissions on the exposure draft of the bill are available on the Ministry of Economic Development website at www.med.govt.nz/investment
The bill can be found at www.parliament.nz