The Australian Government asked the Productivity Commission to undertake a study to benchmark Australia's major project development assessment processes against international best practice. The Commission sought comment on its Major Project Development Assessment Processes Issues Paper, to which the Australian Network of EDOs have responded.
We are concerned that this inquiry referral to the Commission is geared towards ‘streamlining’ rather than leading practice environmental regulation, primarily because the study arises from a Business Council of Australia request (presented to the COAG at a meeting in April 2012). At this meeting, the BCA enunciated six priority areas for competition and regulatory reform, including streamlining environmental assessments and approvals, and improving the efficiency of major project development approvals. Alarmingly, this was adopted by COAG.
As we have previously discussed, COAG’s April 2012 agreement poses a significant risk to the integrity of Australia’s environmental laws and we strongly opposes any ‘streamlining’ of existing development approval processes.
View Submission in response to Productivity Commission Major Project Development Assessment Processes Issues Paper (March 2013) (PDF,948KB)