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Further progress towards a new national trade measurement system.



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Innovation, Industry, Science and Research: Ministers and Parliamentary Secretary

FURTHER PROGRESS TOWARDS A NEW NATIONAL TRADE MEASUREMENT SYSTEM

As an early instalment on the Government's regulatory reform agenda, public comment is being sought on the proposed national trade measurement system.

Dr Craig Emerson, Minister for Small Business, Independent Contractors and the Service Economy, said trade measurement was identified as one of the 10 regulatory hotspots identified by the Council of Australian Governments.

Dr Emerson said a consistent trade measurement system was essential to ensuring that goods sold by measurement are accurately measured and labelled.

"Customers need to be assured that when packaging states that it contains a particular weight or volume, it is an accurate statement of the actual contents," Dr Emerson said.

He said measurement of some kind was involved in trade worth about $400 billion a year to Australia, ranging from purchases at the local shop through to multi-million dollar international trades.

Dr Emerson said: "The April 2007 COAG meeting decided that the Commonwealth should take full responsibility for the national trade measurement system, replacing the existing systems that cause unnecessary inconsistencies and costs for consumers, businesses and government."

However, Dr Emerson described progress in implementing reform of the 10 hotspots over the last eight months as "underwhelming".

Dr Emerson said he and the Minister for Finance and Deregulation, Lindsay Tanner, will be working together in providing fresh impetus to the COAG regulatory reform program, reflecting the high priority that the Prime Minister and State and Territory leaders attached to cutting business regulation at the December COAG meeting.

Mr Tanner and Dr Emerson will co-chair the COAG business regulation and competition working group.

The National Measurement Institute (NMI), a division of the new Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, will assume responsibility for trade measurement from 1 July 2010 and comments received during the consultation period will be carefully considered in the final drafting of the Commonwealth's legislation.

"More than 100 individuals and organisations have already registered their interest in contributing to

Industry Minister > The Hon Dr Craig Emerson MP

Media Release

The Hon Dr Craig Emerson MP

14 Jan 2008

Page 1 of 2 Minister - Innovation, Industry, Science and Research

21/01/2008 http://minister.industry.gov.au/TheHonCraigEmersonMP/Pages/FURTHERPROGRE...

the process and I encourage others to do so," Dr Emerson said.

The discussion paper is available from the NMI website at www.measurement.gov.au. Comments close on 8 February 2008 and parties wishing to participate further in developing the new system can register at www.consultation.business.gov.au

Media Contact: Paul Scully 0419 432 487.

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