BCA in push for greater accountability

Australia's largest business lobby group says regulators need to become more accountable.

Australia's largest business lobby group says regulators need to become more accountable.

That includes submitting to regular performance audits, preparing annual "statements of accountability", and also "regulation impact statements" before pushing ahead with major regulatory changes.

The Business Council of Australia will on Friday call on the federal government to overhaul the country's regulatory framework.

It says Australia needs to "stop the flow" of poor regulation if it wants to remain competitive, warning that the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Index ranks Australia 128 out of 148 nations.

And it has singled out four key Commonwealth agencies responsible for economic regulation - the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, the Australian Taxation Office, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission - saying there ought to be a review of their role, scope and accountability.

"It's great the Abbott government's got a $1 billion red-tape reduction target, but we need a more comprehensive approach that goes to how regulation gets made in the first place, and which regulation needs to be got rid of," business council chief executive Jennifer Westacott said.

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