The GFC Didn't Kill Australian Banks But That Doesn't Mean We Don't Need To Change: RBA's Debelle

Guy Debelle: RBA

Reserve Bank assistant governor Guy Debelle says the global financial system needs to change, and Australia can’t afford to delay or “pick and choose” reforms that the financial sector likes.

Speaking on a panel at the Funding Australia’s Future Forum conference in Sydney today, Debelle argued that Australia needed to learn from the GFC.

His comments come just days after the Labor Government revealed plans to introduce a bank bailout levy. The RBA is considered independent of the political process.

Here’s what Debelle said:

The Australian financial system has undergone a severe stress test over the past five or six years. And it has come through that pretty well.

Are there some things that can be done to make it function better and be more resilient? Yes, and some of them have already been put in train over the past few years, so that the system now is more resilient than it was in 2007. Some of them are the reforms that are being done at the global level.

The fact that the problems didn’t happen here is also not a good argument for not implementing them. The reforms have been developed with the aim of increasing the resiliency of the financial system, which would seem to make them worthwhile in their own right.

I don’t see the logic in not learning from what happened elsewhere rather than waiting to learn the lesson painfully ourselves. Learning from others’ mistakes is a lot less painful approach to life.

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