Government to Consult Stakeholders on Exposure Draft of Road Vehicle Standards Bills

Media Release

PF076/2017

13 December 2017

The Turnbull Government has today released exposure drafts of a package of legislation that will modernise and strengthen the laws governing road vehicles when first supplied to the Australian market, along with a draft of the Rules to be made under the legislation.

The Road Vehicle Standards Bills are designed to maintain and improve vehicle safety while expanding consumer choice and reducing red tape.

This legislation will replace the existing Motor Vehicle Standards Act which has been in place for nearly thirty years and was written at a time when much of today's vehicle technology was not available.

The new legislation, to come into effect from 2019, will provide a modern, strong regulatory platform for vehicle standards that will better protect the community, provide more choice for specialist and enthusiast vehicles and be responsive to emerging technologies.

These reforms will save businesses more than $68 million a year in regulatory compliance costs—a significant saving on annual regulatory costs under the current framework which stand at around $250 million per year.

It will provide increased consumer choice through expanding and improving the pathways for importing specialist and enthusiast vehicles—including performance, low emissions, and mobility access vehicles.

The Bills will also give the responsible Minister strong powers to mandate the recall of vehicles if serious safety issues arise. The powers will apply to all road vehicles supplied in Australia, whether for private or commercial use, providing the Commonwealth Government with the necessary powers to uphold our national safety standards.

This legislative package is the most important set of changes to the Australian Government's regulation of motor vehicles in almost three decades. So it is important we take the time to consult on the details with interested stakeholders—including the automotive sector and consumers—before the Bills are debated in the Parliament.

The Bills will be introduced and debated in the Parliament in the new year, and stakeholders will be asked to provide their feedback on the exposure drafts of the Bills and the Rules by mid-February 2018.

The Road Vehicle Standards package of Bills and information on the consultation process can be found on the Department's website at infrastructure.gov.au/vehicles/mv_standards_act.