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House of Representatives

Customs Amendment (Anti-dumping Commission Transfer) Bill 2013

Explanatory Memorandum

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Industry, the Honourable Ian MacFarlane MP)


The purpose of the Bill is to amend the Customs Act 1901 to separate the Anti-Dumping Commission, comprising the Commissioner for the Anti-Dumping Commission (the Commissioner) and Commission staff members, from the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service. This would allow the Commission to be transferred to the Department of Industry (the Department), consistent with Government policy set out in 'The Coalition Policy to Boost the Competitiveness of Australian Manufacturing' , released in August 2013.

Transferring the Commission from the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service to the Department would allow those considering requests for anti-dumping (including countervailing) action to benefit from the considerable experience and knowledge held across the industry portfolio. Moving responsibility for anti-dumping matters to the Industry portfolio also sends a clear message that the Government is focussed on combatting unfair dumping. An effective trade remedies system is an integral part of Australia's broader plan to ensure a strong industrial sector.

It would also allow the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service to concentrate on other matters of importance to this Government.

The Bill would continue the existence of the Commission within the Department administered by the Minister administering Part XVB of the Customs Act 1901 on or after the commencement of the Bill.

The Bill provides that the Commission would continue to exercise the relevant anti-dumping powers and functions contained in Parts XVB and XVC of the Customs Act 1901 . This would include the receipt and screening of applications for anti-dumping measures, and the conduct of investigations and inquiries relating to the imposition, review and continuation of such measures. The Bill would also transfer to the Commissioner any anti-dumping powers and functions currently retained by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service under Parts XVB and XVC of the Customs Act 1901 .

The Bill would replicate to the greatest extent possible the current delegation powers for the Minister and the Commissioner to the extent that they relate to Parts XVB and XVC of the Customs Act 1901 and to the Customs Tariff (Anti-Dumping) Act 1975 . The Bill would also ensure the Commission could continue to disclose information to the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service for relevant purposes, such as ensuring compliance with measures imposed under anti-dumping legislation.

The Bill would amend the Customs Administration Act 1985 , the Criminal Code Act 1995 and the Law Enforcement Integrity Commissioner Act 2006 to remove references to the Commissioner.

The Bill includes transitional and savings provisions, such as those which would maintain the continuity of applications, submissions and Ministerial appointments, as well as the operation of non-disclosure and law enforcement provisions relating to information received and conduct engaged in prior to commencement.

Financial impact statement

There are no financial impacts associated with this Bill.

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