Economic Analysis Unit
Economic Reform Unit
What is mutual recognition?
These principles are based on the premise that regulations and standards covering goods and occupations in one state meet community standards and expectations and therefore should be appropriate for other jurisdictions.
Mutual recognition is aimed at promoting economic integration and increasing trade and labour mobility between participant jurisdictions by removing regulatory impediments to trade and labour mobility and between Australian states and territories and between Australia and New Zealand. Mutual recognition also promotes increased awareness among regulators and professional associations in relation to procedures and their obligations.
Mutual recognition is also designed to lead to harmonisation of standards and regulatory requirements. Examples of where these requirements are not consistent include:
Mutual recognition only applies to legislation affecting the sale of goods and the registration of occupations carried on by individuals. Mutual recognition does not extend to:
Mutual recognition also does not extend to business licences. Business licensing relates to the requirements for running a business, such as the state of the premises or insurance coverage, and focuses on the conduct of carrying on the business itself, rather than the technical skills of the person or persons carrying on the business.
The Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Arrangement:
In 1996, the Commonwealth, states and territories and New Zealand signed a non-treaty agreement to establish the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Arrangement (TTMRA). The TTMRA was signed by the Prime Minister of Australia, state premiers, and territory chief ministers at the meeting of the Council of Australian Governments on 14 June 1996. The TTMRA was subsequently signed by the Prime Minister of New Zealand on 9 July 1996. The scheme commenced operation on 1 May 1998 with the enactment of enabling legislation.
The TTMRA builds on the MRA and, for Australian jurisdictions, recognises the laws and regulations made in New Zealand and vice versa. The TTMRA is based on the mutual recognition principles in Australia, with some additional exemptions and exclusions.
The TTMRA encapsulates two principles:
The TTMRA can be accessed at: http://www.coag.gov.au/mra/ttmra.pdf
For further information regarding mutual recognition and the application of the Mutual Recognition Act 1992 and the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Act 1997, please contact David Richardson, Manager, Economic Reform Unit, Department of Treasury and Finance on (03) 6233 7214 or by email: David.Richardson@treasury.tas.gov.au.