The Final Report, released in February 2017, makes 99 recommendations as to how the COBP should be amended or otherwise improved. These include:
- revising and re-drafting the COBP in a modern structure and using plain, accessible language;
- amending the definition of ‘small business’ in the COBP;
- including a new provision that obliges signatory banks to provide an applicant for consumer credit with the bank’s ‘not unsuitable assessment’ prepared in accordance with the NCCP;
- prohibiting banks from enforcing a facility if the customer has complied with loan repayment obligations and has acted lawfully;
- ·obliging banks to inform a guarantor where the borrower has been in continuing default for more than 2 months or where the borrower’s credit contract has changed due to financial hardship;
- requiring banks to have recourse to security provided by the borrower before a guarantor’s security, unless the guarantor and borrower agree otherwise;
- rendering a guarantee unenforceable if the bank fails to comply with any pre-execution COBP requirements;
- obliging banks to set default fees that are reasonable having regard to the bank’s costs.
Khoury supported many of the recommendations for small business credit contracts outlined in the Carnell Report.
On 30 June 2017, the ABA said that the industry’s Code of Banking Practice was on track to be finalised by the end of 2017, with redrafting well underway to make it more accessible to customers and small businesses.