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Xenophon urges Palmer to wait for FSI

Senator Nick Xenophon pleaded with the Palmer United Party and other cross-benchers to wait for the findings of the Murray Review before backing the government’s FOFA amendments.

Speaking in parliament ahead of this week’s second failed FOFA disallowance motion, the independent South Australian senator reiterated his opposition to the proposed amendments and called on his fellow cross-benchers to hold off on their support.

“I plead with my crossbench colleagues — the Palmer United Party senators and Senator Muir from the Motoring Enthusiast Party — to support this disallowance and to consider deferring supporting any legislative changes to the FOFA legislation until we hear further from David Murray and his financial services inquiry,” Senator Xenophon said.

Mr Xenophon also requested that his colleagues defer the vote until after the tabling of the much-anticipated ASIC report into the life insurance and risk advice sectors, expected to be released in coming days.

More broadly, he reiterated his concerns about the amendments, calling the underlying motives of the legislation into question.

“I fear the government has been putting industry certainty ahead of consumer protection. I suggest that the financial services industry is big enough and ugly enough to look after itself and that consumers are the ones government should be providing with certainty and adequate protections,” he said.

The disallowance motion was ultimately defeated by 36 votes to 32, with PUP and the MEP supporting the government, along with cross-benchers Bob Day and David Leyonhjelm.