On 3 October, the Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing ASIC’s Capabilities) Bill 2018 received Royal Assent.

The Bill amends the ASIC Act to require that ASIC must consider the effects that the performance of its functions and the exercise of its powers will have on competition in the financial system.

According to the Explanatory Memorandum, the Bill makes an explicit reference to the effect that ASIC must take competition issues into account and that this would oblige ASIC to consciously consider how its actions may impact on competition in the financial system and will enable ASIC to favour one option over another due to its effects on competition.