• ABR Advisory Board charter

    This charter forms the governance plan for this committee and clearly identifies its purpose, roles and responsibilities.


    Terms of reference

    The purpose of the Australian Business Register (ABR) Advisory Board is to enable the best possible outcome in advancing the uptake of the ABR as a whole-of-government service. The desired outcome of this collaboration is to progress whole-of-government outcomes for the ABR and shape its future direction as a means of:

    • reducing compliance costs for the community in dealing with government
    • delivering the intended benefits of the Australian business number (ABN) and ABR.

    Type of committee and length of term

    Category: The ABR Advisory Board is a cross-agency strategic consultative forum

    Length of term: As determined necessary by the Registrar

    Decision making authority

    The ABR Advisory Board will endorse overall plans, inform the priorities for the Registrar's ABR program of work and promote the ABR's strategic whole-of-government role.

    The ABR Advisory Board may delegate activities to working parties in progressing the business of the ABR. The ABR Advisory Board may also endorse or comment on proposals outside formal meeting sessions.

    Governance and relationships

    The Approver for the ABR Advisory Board is the Registrar of the ABR.

    The Advisory Board supports the Registrar and the ABR Executive in setting strategic direction and positioning the ABR to meet government and community expectations to improve efficiency and sustainability in service delivery, and to reduce red tape and compliance costs. The Advisory Board, through its secretariat, will advise the ABR Executive.

    Key outcomes of the Advisory Board will be reflected in ABR plans, ABR communications to government agencies (for example, ABR Update newsletter) and in corporate reporting as directed by the Treasurer.

    Justification for establishment

    The ABR is intended to be a resource for governments at all levels - federal, state and local - for streamlining business to government interactions using the ABN as its unique identifier. The evolving whole-of-government agenda is now calling for more streamlined interactions and increased reliance on the ABN and the ABR.

    Although the Registrar is primarily accountable for these activities, it is critical we promote the adoption of the ABN on a platform which embodies whole-of-government responsibility.

    The ABR is a cornerstone for the measurement of economic activity within Australia, providing a comprehensive, accurate and consistent list of businesses. This list provides the basis for the collection and integration of data from these businesses, from statistical surveys and from government administrative records. This information is used to compile economic statistics, including the National Accounts, for the purpose of enabling informed decision making, research and discussion within government and the community.

    Failure to secure confidence in the administration and direction of the ABR will undermine the level of agency participation required to deliver upon the intent of the ABR and will result in missed opportunities to reduce the compliance burden on business. Improving services to the business community includes:

    • providing greater accessibility to services
    • increasing certainty
    • reducing or standardising reporting
    • reducing or masking complexity
    • reuse of services and facilities
    • combining multiple processes into single processes which make sense to business.

    To deliver these services to business there is a need for agencies to work together and share knowledge as allowed by the law. The ABR Advisory Board will play a key role in setting priorities for the program of work and assist in positioning the ABN, ABR and its services to fulfil their intended roles.

      Last modified: 09 Mar 2012QC 22552