About the AFCF

On 26 September 2008, Minister Bowen established the Australian Financial Centre Forum (AFCF) to progress the Government's initiative to position Australia as a leading financial services centre in the region.

The AFCF is a Government and industry partnership comprising: a Chairman, Mr Mark Johnson; a Panel of Experts, consisting of six senior financial sector representatives; the Treasury Taskforce; and a Reference Group, which will be the main consultative body and includes representatives from the peak financial sector industry associations, the State Governments and Austrade.

The initiative is seeking to capitalise on Australia's competitive advantages in the financial sector and exploit opportunities in the region to increase cross-border trade and investment in financial services. The end goal is to enhance the sector's contribution to domestic economic growth. The growth and development of the region presents Australia with significant opportunities to supply financial services internationally.

The AFCF will take a whole of government approach in examining policy settings affecting the international competitiveness of the industry, and identify practical strategies to position Australia as a leading financial services centre. The AFCF will look at a broad range of policy settings including, but not limited to: financial sector regulation; taxation; improving Australia's skill and talent pool through education and immigration policies; and promotion of Australia's financial services industry.

The creation of the AFCF follows from the Financial Services Hub Summit the Government co-hosted with the NSW Government on 31 July 2008. The Summit was focused on identifying new opportunities for Australian financial services and charting a path forward to ensure that Australia's financial services sector is internationally competitive.