House of Representatives

Biosecurity (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2014

Second Reading Speech

Mr Joyce (Minister for Agriculture and Deputy Leader of The Nationals)

I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

The Biosecurity (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2014 is the first companion bill to the Biosecurity Bill 2014. It will facilitate the transition from the Quarantine Act to the Biosecurity Act. This bill makes consequential amendments to a range of other Commonwealth legislation to reflect the broad scope of managing biosecurity risk. It will also replace references to 'the Quarantine Act' with 'the Biosecurity Act 2014'.

Biosecurity is wide reaching and impacts air travel, shipping and fisheries amongst other matters, with the result that over 20 pieces of Commonwealth legislation will require some minor amendments.

This bill will repeal the Quarantine Act and the Quarantine Charges (Collection) Act 2014. Most importantly, it will allow the Department of Agriculture to provide for a smooth transition from the old legislation to the new regulatory framework.

The bill will do this by ensuring that biosecurity risk managed under the Quarantine Act will continue to be managed following its repeal. For example, if a person is directed not to move a good under the Quarantine Act, that direction will still be valid under the Biosecurity Act. Or if an import permit application is made under the Quarantine Act, it is taken to have been made under the Biosecurity Act.

In some key areas, such as approved arrangement industry partnerships, the transition will take place over a longer period of time so businesses have more time to become compliant with new requirements and both business and the department can better manage the volume of work associated with the change.

Debate adjourned.