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Chemistry Australia - Industrial Chemicals Bills - a boost to innovation and investment - 3 April 2019

Industrial Chemicals Bills - a boost to innovation and investment

The Australian chemistry industry welcomes the successful passage of the final elements of the Industrial Chemicals Bills through the Senate.

Chemistry Australia CEO Samantha Read said, “The Industrial Chemical Bills deliver reforms that were recommended in 2008 by the Productivity Commission. Today’s outcome is the result of a decade of work by the Department of Health and successive Governments in consultation with industry and community groups, to rebalance the industrial chemicals regulatory scheme.”

“The reforms re-focus regulatory effort to areas of higher risk, ensuring that Australia is best-placed to protect workers, the environment and the broader community.

“The Australian market is small by global terms; bringing our systems in line with other major economies reduces barriers to investment and enables a smarter use of time and resources.

“Removing duplication by recognising assessments by trusted overseas regulators means that companies looking to innovate in Australia will know that they can access the latest global chemistry, at the same time as international competitors.

“The latest innovations in chemistry include coatings and paints with greater resistance to Australia’s weather conditions; solutions that make manual handling or transportation safer; advanced materials for aerospace, defence and marine applications; or smart products that make buildings more sustainable.

“We all want to see Australia bringing more world-leading products to the global market. Australia has the skills and the companies to make this happen. Today’s outcome is a positive step to help the industry and research sector to develop IP, commercialise new products, and drive up our global innovation and competitiveness rankings.

“Importantly, the reforms have the potential for significant flow-on benefits through value chains, right across the Australian economy. Products and technologies created in the Australian chemistry industry supply 109 of Australia’s 111 industries, creating opportunities for value chains to innovate and improve their product offerings. Major sectors such as agriculture, food production, building, mining and health should expect to see new products coming onto the market once the reforms are introduced.

“This is significant reform, and we look forward to further work with the Federal Government and Health Department on the regulations that will support the Australian Industrial Chemicals Introduction Scheme (AICIS) when it commences on 1 July 2020,” said Ms Read.

Chemistry Australia recognises the important role of regulation in protecting workers, the community and the environment. Regulatory regimes underpin our social licence to operate, providing the assurance to the community that appropriate standards are in place, and complied with. A balanced regulatory environment achieves these critical aims, while promoting business growth.



Media contacts:
Shayna Welsh – [email protected] or 0448 660 443


Chemistry Australia is the pre-eminent national body representing the $40 billion Australian chemistry industry, one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the country. The industry employs more than 60,000 people and contributes more than $10.8 billion to Australia’s GDP. Members of Chemistry Australia are positioned across the entire value chain including manufacturers, importers and distributors, logistics and supply chain partners, raw material suppliers, fabricators, compounders, recyclers, research, academia and service providers to the industry. These businesses range from small family-owned companies to leading national and multinational enterprises.  


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