In September 2013, the Australian Government introduced a Deregulation Agenda with a strong commitment to reducing the burden of regulation and improving regulatory practices.
This initiative established whole of government mechanisms to oversee deregulation across government and co-ordinate red tape reduction efforts, and set clear expectations that regulation should not be the default option for government policy makers.
By the end of 2015, the Australian Government had taken decisions to reduce the annual cost of complying with Commonwealth regulation by $4.8 billion, exceeding its target of $3 billion over three years.
Key elements of the 2013 Deregulation Agenda include:
- Cutting the cost to businesses, community organisations and individuals of complying with Australian Government regulation by at least $1 billion a year.
- Requiring all major regulatory decisions be informed by a Regulation Impact Statement that lays out the costs and benefits of regulating or not regulating.
- Introducing the Regulatory Burden Measurement framework to calculate the regulatory costs of current or proposed policies or regulation.
- Undertaking for the first time in 2014, an assessment of the regulatory burden imposed by the Commonwealth stock of regulation.
- Introducing the Regulator Performance Framework applicable to over 80 Australian Government regulatory authorities to encourage regulators to reduce regulatory burden, communicate clearly with stakeholders, take risk-based and proportionate approaches to regulation, operate efficiently and transparently, and undertake continuous improvement.