The Australian Commonwealth is likely to take control of consumer protection following proposals to amend the Trade Practices Act and hand over responsibility for many areas covered by the state’s Fair Trading Acts.

In particular, Australia currently has a product safety regulatory system with duplicative national and state/territory responsibilities. Following a review of Australia consumer policy framework, all Australian governments agreed to a new consumer policy framework, comprising a single national consumer law.

A consultation paper has been released that can be accessed at:

Submissions can be made until 17 March 2009.

The new product safety legislative regime will be enforced by the Australian Competition& Consumer Commission (ACCC).