Wayne Byres steps down from APRA, Jim Chalmers confirms

The chair of the prudential regulator. which oversees banks, super funds and insurers, will quit the job 18 months early.

Wayne Byres, who was appointed chair of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority by the Coalition in 2014, has announced his resignation.

Sources say he alone made the decision to retire early and was not pushed out by government.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers said he thanked Mr Byres for his “outstanding” contribution to APRA and his dedicated service to Australia.

It comes amid a wider clean-out by the Labor government of agency boards and executives, including the resignation of the National Disability Insurance Agency chief executive last month and chair last week.

Last week, members of the Infrastructure Australia board agreed to leave early amid a review of the body.

The government is also said to be looking closely at the make-up of the Australia Post board as well as the Future Fund.

Mr Chalmers said Mr Byres would be “greatly missed”, and the government would undertake an “open and transparent process” to select the next chair.

“Throughout a long and distinguished career, Mr Byres has made a significant contribution to the Australia financial system and the global framework for prudential regulation,” Mr Chalmers said.

“His leadership and expertise has positioned the Commonwealth to respond well to some of the greatest challenges in Australia’s history – most recently in ensuring the stability of the financial system during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Mr Byres said being APRA chair had been an “honour and a privilege”.

“I’ve enjoyed the past eight years immensely, and I’m pleased with what has been achieved by APRA in that time. There is always more to do, but the financial system is stable, APRA’s leadership team is strong, and the organization and its people are well placed to continue to manage future challenges,” Mr Byres said.

“I feel that now is a good time to hand over the chair’s role to someone new who will lead the organization on the next stage of its journey.

“I have every confidence the organization will continue to do great things for the Australian community.”

Mr Byres will continue in the role until around October when a new chair – elected by the government – ​​will take up the position.

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