Doug Shave

Doug Shave

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    Gunning Report welcomed

    15/12/2000 6:19 PM
     
    15/12/00

    Fair Trading Minister Doug Shave has welcomed the final report of the Gunning Inquiry.

    “The committee has completed a long and difficult task of examining the seven boards and the committee that come under the Fair Trading portfolio,” Mr Shave said.

    The inquiry examined the:
    • Building Disputes Committee;
    • Builders Registration Board;
    • Finance Brokers Supervisory Board;
    • Land Valuers Licensing Board;
    • Motor Vehicles Dealers Licensing Board;
    • Painters’ Registration Board;
    • Real Estate and Business Agents Supervisory Board; and -
    • Settlement Agents Supervisory Board.

    “The committee sat for 66 days, received 171 submissions, heard 87 witnesses and conducted a very thorough investigation into these agencies,” Mr Shave said.

    “I plan to take an initial submission to Cabinet on Monday based on the report’s findings and 52 recommendations.”

    The final Gunning report followed an interim report on the Finance Brokers Supervisory Board in September. The recommendations of the interim report were accepted in principle by the Government and an implementation panel established to put them into effect.

    Since the interim report was presented, there had been a complete change of membership of the Finance Brokers Supervisory Board. Initiatives undertaken by the implementation panel include drafting new legislation based on the report.

    “If the final report contains recommendations which require changes to that draft legislation I will consider it carefully. I expect this legislation will be a priority in the new Parliament,” Mr Shave said.

    The Minister said the ability of the Gunning Inquiry to look into the finance broking sector while extensive police and other investigations were under way showed that it had been the right form of inquiry, rather than a Royal Commission.

    “This form of inquiry was chosen so that efforts to recover investor funds and bring wrongdoers to justice would not be put on hold, a likely consequence of a Royal Commission,” he said.

    Sixteen people have been charged with more than 300 finance broking-related offences, the work of supervisors to untangle the financial web left by two key brokers has continued, and public examinations of a bank and auditors started while the Gunning Inquiry was in progress

    “Despite the efforts of a some people to obstruct the work of the committee and to impugn its members, they remained resolute in carrying out their task with integrity and professionalism,” Mr Shave said.

    “I want to put on record my appreciation of the work of the committee members and inquiry staff. Their dedication contrasts with those who took, and I am sure will continue to take, every opportunity to knock the inquiry.

    “The motives of those who refused to present their allegations to the Inquiry yet claimed it did not go far enough are questionable.”

    Media contact: John Clune 9213 6500