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The government has released the terms of reference for the external advisory panel on whistleblower protections, alongside the announcement of external members.
The panel, chaired by Treasury, will review and comment upon draft legislation including whistleblower protections for people who disclose information about tax avoidance and other breaches of tax laws administered by the Commissioner of Taxation; and existing corporate whistleblower protections under statutes administered by ASIC and APRA.
Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O’Dwyer said the government expects to introduce the draft legislation this calendar year.
“The Turnbull government is determined to get the whistleblower settings right,” said Ms O’Dwyer.
“We need a strong legal framework that gives whistleblowers the confidence to make disclosures; encourages larger companies to develop whistleblower policies and internal frameworks; provides effective redress to those who suffer reprisals as a result of blowing the whistle; and enables regulators and law enforcement agencies to act quickly and decisively upon whistleblower reports.”
The current external members of the panel include accounting figures such as Deloitte partner John Nguyen, and Michael Croker, head of tax at CAANZ.
Professor A J Brown of Griffith University and Dr David A Chaikin of University of Sydney Business School round up the expert advisory panel, while other members may join based on expertise and availability.