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Wednesday, 6 July 2011
Page: 7727

Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongAssistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation) (10:55): I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

This bill amends the Petroleum Excise (Prices) Act 1987 to address uncertainties that have arisen regarding the determination of volume weighted average realised prices, or VOLWARE prices, which are the prices used to calculate excise liability.

Under the crude oil excise regime, a VOLWARE price is required to be determined for each month by the minister, or a person authorised by the minister, within a specific time. A written notice setting out the terms of these price determinations must also be provided to the relevant producer or producers, although no time period for doing so is specified. It has been suggested that if a written notice setting out the terms of a price determination is not provided to producers then the determination itself is invalid.

The Excise Legislation Amendment (Condensate) Bill amends the Petroleum Excise (Prices) Act 1987 to clarify that a failure to provide written notice of a VOLWARE price determination does not affect the validity of the determination.

The amendments also extend the ability of producers to seek a review of VOLWARE price determinations by allowing them to seek a review within 28 days of receiving a written notice.

These amendments serve only to clarify the existing operation of the law and have no revenue impact.

The measures will take effect from midnight (by legal time in the Australian Capital Territory), 13 May 2008, consistent with the original 2008-09 budget measure.

Full details of the measures in this bill are contained in the combined explanatory memorandum.

Debate adjourned.