Trade regulation

FAST Record ID: 

Annual Report

15 Feb 2018

On 11 October 2016, the Senate established the Select Committee on Red Tape (committee) to inquire into and report on the effect of restrictions and prohibitions on business (red tape) on the economy and community, by 1 December 2017, with particular reference to:



7 Nov 2017

This paper sets out the size and nature of Australia’s red tape problem and describes the opportunities available to policymakers to boost economic growth without further calls on the Australian taxpayer.


13 Oct 2017

This overview of the Iran nuclear deal provides a basic overview of what is involved and outlines Australia's policy position.

Policy report

11 Sep 2017

Recommends a return to New Zealand’s long-cherished bipartisan trade policy that has been damaged in recent years’ debates over the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Discussion paper

4 May 2017


• Red tape costs the Australian economy $176 billion, 11 per cent of GDP, each year in foregone economic output. Similarly, in the US red tape is estimated to cost $2 trillion annually, or 12 per cent of GDP.

• On...


10 May 2016

‘Gearing up for Trade’ evaluation commissioned by the Office of Development Effectiveness in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, assessed the effectiveness of Australia’s support for trade facilitation in Asia and the Pacific, and examined whether the investments have assisted partner countries to better...

Research report

13 Apr 2016

Executive summary

Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) is a legal provision in international agreements that enables foreign investors to take host states to an arbitral tribunal for alleged treaty breaches.

• The goal of investor-state arbitration is to provide a de-politicised, unbiased and...

Research report

6 Oct 2015


Significant controversy surrounds the impact of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) in a number of areas. This report focuses on two of these areas by examining the ChAFTA’s provisions on labour mobility.

The first area of controversy is whether the...

Research report

4 Oct 2015

Explains how it is that the regulation of welfare of layer hens is now largely a matter of voluntary labeling for consumer choice rather than mandatory government regulation of animal welfare in production conditions.

Summary In mid-2014, Australian consumer affairs ministers announced that...



1 Jul 2015

Big numbers have a tendency to take on a life of their own, writes Tom Westland

Economic modelling with unstated assumptions is a bit like chicken nuggets with unstated ingredients – one swallows at one’s own risk. And yet there’s been a lot...

Research report

1 Jul 2015

Outlines the legal status of Airbnb and Uber operations in NSW, and contains an overview of each platform and current usage in Sydney, and where applicable, more broadly in NSW.

Introduction The way in which people consume goods and services has changed dramatically...



28 Jun 2015

There is no doubt at all that international free trade creates global wealth and raises living standards for all countries involved. It allows nations to benefit from the natural advantages and skills of others, and it allows consumers to enjoy a greater choice of goods...

Briefing paper

31 May 2015

This paper suggests a process for consultation with business, consumers and various levels of government that would enhance outcomes.


Australia has an open economy that is heavily dependent on trade for its wellbeing. Well formulated evidence based trade policy therefore matters...

Research report

21 May 2015

This report examines the debt collection industry in Australia on behalf of the ACCC and its Consumer Consultative Committee.

It aims to provide greater understanding of the industry and to identify structural issues or operational practices that may lead to problematic behaviours within the...

Research report

31 Mar 2015

This is the first comprehensive review of Australia’s competition laws and policy in over 20 years. The National Competition Policy Review (The Hilmer Review) of 1993 underpinned the development of the National Competition Policy – a co-operative initiative of the Commonwealth and State and Territory...

Journal article

4 Dec 2014

Regulation is a fact of life. It affects the food we eat, the safety of our workplace, the goods and services we buy and sell and the quality of our natural environment. It plays an important role in guarding New Zealanders from harm, protecting our...

Journal article

4 Dec 2014

The importance of an ‘efficient and effective regulatory environment’ (Offices of the Ministers of Finance and Regulatory Reform, 2013) has never been more prominent in New Zealand than it is at the present time. The New Zealand Productivity Commission’s Regulatory Institutions and Practices report, which...

Journal article

4 Dec 2014

Regulatory coherence has over the past four years become a term of art for domestic regulatory systems which interface seamlessly with the systems of other countries. And yet a precise or at least agreed definition remains elusive and descriptions often confuse ends and means. This...



28 Oct 2014

Cultural policy and trade policy are pulling in different directions, and Ten’s Offspring could be one casualty

On 7 August this year 1.3 million people watched what is probably the last episode of the popular Australian series Offspring. Created...

Research report

10 Oct 2014

Assesses the cost structures of businesses operating in the Australian retail trade industry, including costs relative to international competitors.

Key points

The Australian retail sector comprises more than 133 000 businesses contributing around 5 per cent of GDP and 9 per cent...