14/08/2017 9:25 AM AEST | Updated 14/08/2017 10:33 AM AEST

Ian Narev To Depart As CommBank CEO In Wake Of Money Laundering Scandal

It comes in the wake of accusations the bank breached financial compliance laws

David Gray / Reuters
Commonwealth Bank CEO Ian Narev will exit the company in mid 2018.

Commonwealth bank CEO Ian Narev will step down in the wake of accusations the bank breached federal anti-money laundering laws.

Bank Chair Catherine Livingstone said the board had decided to provide details of its CEO succession process to ensure markets are fully informed and to provide certainty for the business.

"Managing director and CEO, Ian Narev, will retire by the end of the 2018 financial year, with the exact timing dependent on the outcome of an ongoing comprehensive internal and external search process," the bank said in a statement.


The announcement comes as the bank faces a money-laundering scandal, with Australia's financial intelligence and regulatory agency, AUSTRAC, accusing the bank of seriously and systematically breaching compliance of Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing laws.

There had been speculation about Narev's future after the bank was publicly accused by AUSTRAC of a staggering 53,700 breaches of anti-money laundering and counter-terror financing laws.

Livingstone told reporters the board had full confidence in Narev, and would be looking for someone with a strong moral compass and dedication to transparency to Succeed Narev.

"Those are qualities we have in Ian, and those are qualities we would seek in his successor," Livingstone said.

The CBA annual report, published on Monday, showed Narev's pay dropped in 2016-17 to $5.7 million, down from $8.7 million the year before.