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COAG action on duplicate regulation should focus on SA

The Franchise Council of Australia (FCA) welcomes the Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) determination to stamp out duplicate regulation, particularly in South Australia (SA), where the SA Government intends to do exactly the opposite.

FCA Executive Director Steve Wright said COAG should focus attention on the costly and confusing intention of the SA Government to fly in the face of the COAG agenda by duplicating already existing federal franchising law in SA.

“The intention to duplicate franchising laws in SA is the brainchild of Small Business Minister Tom Koutsantonis, a Government Minister who should be determined to cut out unwanted regulation, not create it,” Mr Wright said.

“The Federal Government has said the Koutsantonis move makes no sense.  The past Federal Minister for Small Business, Senator Sherry, went so far as to predict a Constitutional challenge against it.

“The proposal has been rejected by the Small Business Ministerial Council when all Governments were Labor, both State and Federal.  If COAG is serious it will tell Mr Koutsantonis to cool his jets and allow a foreshadowed review of the national franchising regulations to occur next year.

“Why it is necessary for Mr Kousantonis to jump in with his own laws later this year has simply not been established by the SA Government.

“There is no demonstrated need.  On the other hand, the COAG is well aware there is an established negative economic impact attached to State-Federal regulatory duplication and overlap.

“SA has the weakest business confidence in the nation.  It does not need to make matters worse by throwing new compliance burdens into a successfully functioning national sector which has been operating at better than national GDP growth for the last decade.”

April 13 2012

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