The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) has put its support behind The Omnibus Repeal Day (Autumn 2014) Bill, which it says will reduce regulatory burdens on businesses.
The Bill which was introduced to parliament on Wednesday is part of the government’s regulatory reform plan designed to cut bureaucratic compliance costs for businesses and households.
“The Omnibus Repeal Day Bill to be introduced into the Parliament today (Wednesday) marks the start of the Government’s regulatory reform that will boost the competitiveness of Australian business including the $111 billion food and grocery manufacturing sector,” AFGC CEO Gary Dawson said.
“If we are serious about growth, we need to be serious about regulatory reform as excessive red tape has been a major barrier to business growth, investment and employment.”
Dawson says that current regulation of the sector is ‘inefficient and heavy handed’, a view that was supported in the findings of the Reforming Regulation of the Australian Food and Grocery Sector Report which was released by the AFGC last year and by commissioned from Deloitte Access Economics.
“(The report) concluded that the current regulation of food and grocery falls well short of best practice and may indeed be one of the poorest examples of industry regulation in Australia,” said Dawson.
“There is real urgency in driving regulation reform for the food and grocery manufacturing sector while maintaining Australia’s strong public health and safety standards.”
Dawson says that the economic benefit of removing red tape within the sector will help drive innovation and save jobs.
“Deloitte quantified the economic benefit of removing $100m of regulatory costs to be around $250m in additional GDP and more than 200 additional jobs for the food and grocery sector,” said Dawson.
“The food and grocery sector, Australia’s largest manufacturing sector, is very supportive of the government’s efforts to roll back of costly unnecessary red tape. We welcome the emphasis on bringing back an evidence based approach to regulations that reflect regulatory best practice.”