The financial sector plays a vital role in supporting a vibrant, growing economy, and the financial system’s ultimate purpose is to facilitate sustainable growth in the economy by meeting the financial needs of the community and the economy.

As financial services become more globalised and technological disruption becomes more prevalent, Australia needs to keep pace with innovation in banking and finance to stay competitive.

Financial services are provided by banks, credit unions, accounting companies and others firms providing banking, insurance, securities, lending, payments, investment, financial advice and other products and services to consumers and businesses.

Financial technology — or FinTech — will have an important role to play in Australia’s innovation future.

FinTech is all about stimulating technological innovation so that financial markets and systems can become more efficient and consumer focussed. This can help drive improvements in traditional financial services and, perhaps more importantly, promote disruption through innovative new products and services, which can offer benefits to consumers and other sectors of the economy.

The Government wants to help create an environment for Australia’s FinTech sector where it can be internationally competitive, and where it can energise the broader local economy by attracting and keeping talented entrepreneurs in Australia. We want to see FinTech in Australia become a locus of creative thinking and business activity.

There is enormous opportunity in our region for Australia’s financial services exports, as well as for businesses to provide new products and financial services which create value for individuals and other sectors of the economy. Growing our FinTech capabilities will also position Australia to seize new opportunities from the transitioning economies of our major trading partners, especially China.

Australia has a fantastic opportunity to build new industries for the future: with innovation and the great talents of its people.