COAG signs up to proposals to cut red tape
FRI 13 APRIL 2012
Prime Minister, Minister for Finance and Deregulation
COAG has today agreed to fast track the removal of red tape for environmental assessments and approvals, after listening to the requests of business.
At the inaugural meeting of the Business Advisory Forum yesterday, business leaders raised delays in environmental approvals and assessments as a major cost. These delays, due to duplicative processes across federal and state systems, can take businesses months or even years to resolve.
Today COAG acted on that concern and the Gillard Government and states and territories agreed to fast track arrangements to use state assessment and approval processes by March 2013.
The removal of these regulations will protect the environment whilst ending the costly delays that result from double-handling and duplication.
COAG today established across-jurisdictional Taskforce to develop the policy and timetable for this new deregulation agenda, to be chaired by the Secretary of the Commonwealth Department of Finance and Deregulation.
COAG also agreed to progress key issues raised at the Business Advisory Forum and asked the Taskforce to provide advice to the next COAG meeting on the specific reforms.
In particular, the Taskforce will provide urgent advice in advance of the next COAG meeting on how to fast track and rationalise carbon reduction and energy efficiency schemes.
COAG also directed the Taskforce to prepare a comprehensive report on the red-tape challenge to identify examples of burdensome or unnecessary regulations that frustrate businesses on a day to day basis.
To ensure that the benefits of these important regulatory reforms are sustained, a National Productivity Compact has also been agreed between the Commonwealth, states and territories and business.
This Compact will set out a high-level statement on principles for effective regulation and reform, with the plan to finalise this by the next Business Advisory Forum to be held in the second half of 2012.