STEPHEN JONES MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FINANCIAL SERVICES
MEMBER FOR WHITLAM
ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR CHARITIES
MEMBER FOR FENNER
Revelations have emerged that Treasurer Josh Frydenberg knew of concerns relating to the renumeration benefits of Australian Securities and Investments Commission Chair James Shipton for over a month before disclosing the investigation.
The Treasurer should level with the Australian people about what he knew, when he knew it, and why he did nothing about it for over a month.
This afternoon, the Treasurer issued a statement which claimed that, “On 22 October 2020 I received correspondence from the Auditor-General for Australia bringing to my attention matters that he identified while conducting an audit of ASIC’s annual financial statements.”
The Standing Committee on Economics quickly debunked the Treasurer’s claim:
ANDREW LEIGH: The Treasurer’s statement, Ms Chester, says that he was first notified of this matter on 22nd October. Is it the case that there was no communication with the Treasury or the Treasurer on this matter prior to yesterday?
KAREN CHESTER: No. So as would be the normal protocol, when we became aware of the seriousness of the concerns of the ANAO, there were discussions that I had with the Treasury Secretary and the relevant Deputy Secretary of Treasury on the 28th of September.
LEIGH: Was that the first communication?
CHESTER: That was the first communication with the Treasury. The Treasurer as well was in receipt of a letter from the AG, sorry an email from the AG, on the 15th of September in which he advised the Treasurer that there were concerns that were to do with the closing out of the financial statements.
The Treasurer should immediately clarify whether, and why, he sat on this important information for more than a month.
FRIDAY, 23 OCTOBER 2020