ASIC is not lowering standards

The concerns that ASIC is lowering standards by no longer maintaining the ASIC Training Register are misguided, according to the Institute of Public Accountants (IPA).

ASIC Consultation Paper 215 proposes that ASIC will no longer maintain the ASIC Training Register for financial planners while training providers will self-assess their compliance with RG 146.

"The reality is that ASIC is not a training course regulator," said IPA chief executive officer, Andrew Conway. 

"ASIC provided the ASIC Training Register as a tool for financial planners to see which providers were already assessed as meeting the requirements. 

"There has been a misperception by some that the ASIC Register was a list of recommended providers, when it was only a list of training providers that have documented that they meet RG 146 requirements. "By moving to a self-regulatory model, ASIC is merely clarifying the existing reality that it does not assess individual training courses.  There already exists a robust training assessment regime with mechanisms in place to ensure quality and, this is where responsibility for assessing RG 146 courses should lie.

"We are not arguing against improvements to the quality of RG 146 training but we believe the most effective way to raise standards is to have an exam process.  That way every provider will need to ensure that their training will be sufficient to ensure a participant passes the ASIC exam."

"ASIC and the public are better served by focusing resources on developing a rigorous exam process than maintaining the Register. 

Therefore, we do not believe that moving to a self-assessment regime will lower standards," said Mr Conway.