Commonwealth Numbered Regulations - Explanatory Statements

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Statutory Rules 2000 No. 97

Issued by the Authority of the Minister for Financial Services and Regulation

Corporations Act 1989

Corporations (Fees) Amendment Regulations 2000 (No. 3)

Section 22 of the Corporations Act 1989 (the Act) empowers the Governor-General to make regulations, not inconsistent with the Act or the Corporations Law, prescribing, among other things, matters which are required by the Corporations Law to be prescribed by regulations, or necessary or convenient to be prescribed by regulations for carrying out or giving effect to the Corporations Law.

Section 25 of the Act provides that the regulations may prescribe fees (including fees that are taxes) for chargeable matters. Chargeable matters are defined in section 9 of the Corporations Law as:

(a)       the lodgment, registration or submission for examination of documents under the Law;

(b)       the inspection or search of registers kept by, or documents in the custody of, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (the Commission), the production by the Commission under a subpoena of such registers or documents, and the issuing of documents or copies of documents by the Commission;

(c)       the making of inquiries of, or applications to, the Minister or Commission in relation to a matter arising under the Law and the granting of licences, consents or approvals, or the doing of any other act under the Law, by the Minister or the Commission; and

(d)       the making of applications to the Corporations and Securities Panel (the Panel) and the doing of any act by the Panel in dealing with such applications.

Subsection 26(2) of the Act provides that where a fee is prescribed as a stated amount, that amount is not to exceed $5,000 while subsection 26(3) of the Act provides that two or more fees may be prescribed for the same chargeable matter.

Subsection 1352(1) of the Corporations Law adds the further provision that the upper limit on the aggregate amount of the fees payable for a chargeable matter is $25,000.

The Regulations amend the Corporations (Fees) Regulations 1990 (the Fees Regulations) by increasing fees in line with the movements in the Consumer Price Index over the last three years and making a supplementary increase in fees. The supplementary increase is the fourth, and last, of a series of such increases to ensure the difference between the cost of the national corporate regulation scheme, including compensation payments to the States, and the revenue recouped, is reduced over time.

None of the fees set out in the Regulations exceeds the $5,000 limit referred to in subsection 26(2) of the Act for a fee that is stated as a prescribed amount. Where two or more fees apply in respect of the same chargeable matter, the total of those fees does not exceed the upper limit of $25,000 referred to in subsection 1352(1) of the Corporations Law.

The responsible State and Northern Territory Ministers on the Ministerial Council for Corporations have been consulted about the Regulations as required by the Corporations Agreement reached between State, Northern Territory and Commonwealth Ministers who had responsibilities in relation to corporate regulation in June 1990. The approval of the Ministerial Council is not required for amendments to regulations relating to fees.

Details of the Regulations are in the Attachment.

The Regulations commence on 1 July 2000.


Regulation 1: Name of Regulations

Regulation 1 provides that the Regulations are the Corporations (Fees) Amendment Regulations 2000 (No. 3).

Regulation 2: Commencement

Regulation 2 provides that the Regulations commence on 1 July 2000.

Regulation 3: Amendment of Corporations (Fees) Regulations 1990

Regulation 3 provides that Schedule 1 amends the Corporations (Fees) Regulations 1990.

Schedule 1: Amendments

Item 1 - Schedule

The amendments in Schedule 1 increase the fees in Column 3 of the Schedule to the Corporations (Fees) Regulations by 19.78 percent, comprising a 12.82 percent increase in line with the movement in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) between the December quarters of 1993 and 1999, and a further 6.96 percent increase to recoup the costs of administering the national corporate regulation scheme. At the time of the previous fees increase, on 1 August 1997, the 1994 fees figures, which are used as the base fees for the purposes of calculating fees increases, were increased by 15.48 percent, being 9.36 percent for the movement in the CPI between the December quarters of 1993. and 1996 and 6.12 percent for the supplementary increase.

The 19.78 percent increase was applied to the base fees and rounded as follows:

*       amounts below $50 were rounded to the nearest dollar;

*       amounts from $50 to $200 were rounded to the nearest $5; and

*       amounts above $200 were rounded to the nearest $10.

With the exception detailed below, the changes in quantum of fees are as set out in the following table:

Base Fee        Previous Fee New Fee

       2 2 2

       7 8 8

       13 15 16

       25 29 30

       30 35 36

       50 60 60

       100 115 120

       175 200 210

       200 230 240

       250 290 300

       400 4601 480

       500 580 600

Fees for lodging annual returns of proprietary companies and small transferring financial institutions remain at their previous level of $200.

       Base Fee ($) Previous Fee ($) New Fee ($)

       600 690 720

       750 870 900

       1000 1150 1200

       1500 1730 1800

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