MEDIA STATEMENT: Sugar Industry (Real Choice in Marketing) Amendment Bill consultation regulatory impact statement released.

The Queensland Productivity Commission (QPC) has today released the Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) on the Sugar Industry (Real Choice in Marketing) Amendment Bill 2015 (Qld).

Principal Commissioner Kim Wood said the role of the QPC is to provide an independent impact assessment of the Bill prior to a second reading debate in the Queensland Parliament in line with the recommendations of the Parliament’s Agriculture and Environment Committee.

“Regulation can impose additional costs on business and the wider community, so it is important there is a clear rationale and strong case for any government intervention” Commissioner Wood said.

“The purpose of the RIS is to provide decision makers with the information they need to assist in the assessment of the benefits and costs of regulation intervention on the affected stakeholders including business, community, employment, environment and the economy”

Mr Wood said the Queensland sugar industry accounts for 95% of the nation’s raw sugar production, generated $1.5 billion in export revenue to the State and supported 4,000 cane farming enterprises. It is second only in importance to the beef industry in Queensland.

“There have been a number of inquiries into this matter already, but no comprehensive assessment of the potential impacts,” Mr Wood said.

“The QPC has considered a range of matters in the Consultation RIS including the 2006 deregulation, the national review on sugar marketing and concerns regarding market power”

Mr Wood said the Consultation RIS draft findings conclude that there is insufficient evidence that the benefits of the regulatory intervention proposed by the Bill would be greater than the costs.

“We are consulting on this assessment and welcome stakeholder views to inform our final recommendation” he said.

The QPC encourages all interested parties to be involved in the Consultation RIS process.

Submissions to the Consultation RIS are due 13 November 2015. The QPC will release a Decision RIS to Government on 25 November 2015.

The Consultation RIS can be accessed at https://www.qpc.qld.gov.au/regulatory-review/