The third stage of the consultation process for the Australia-United States Defence Trade Cooperation Treaty has begun with the release of a draft of the Australian legislation to implement the Treaty.
Minister for Defence Stephen Smith and Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare today released the exposure draft Defence Trade Controls Bill 2011 for comment and response from the Defence industry and the community.
The legislation is required before the Treaty enters in to force.
Once implemented, the Treaty will create a framework for trade between Australia and the United States in certain defence materiel, technology and services without the need for United States or Australian export licences.
The release of the Exposure Draft is the next stage of an extensive consultation process headed by Mr Ken Peacock AM.
The first stage commenced in December 2010, and included meetings with industry in eight capital cities and regional centres.
The second stage of consultation is being conducted through the Joint Defence and Industry Advisory Panel chaired by Mr Peacock.
The Panel includes experts from major Australian Defence companies and small-to-medium businesses.
The first meeting of the Panel was held in May and was attended by Mr Clare.
The second meeting was held in Adelaide on 28 July.
The release of the Exposure Draft is the next step in the consultation process.
Mr Smith and Mr Clare also released draft explanatory material, including a guide providing information about the proposed regulations for comment.
Industry, universities and members of the community are invited to make a submission to the Government on the draft legislation.
It is proposed that legislation implementing the Treaty be introduced into Parliament later this year.
The Australia-United States Defence Trade Cooperation Treaty was signed in Sydney on 5 September 2007.
The United States Congress passed implementing legislation on 28 September 2010, and the Treaty received ratification consent by the United States Senate on 29 September 2010.
The Draft is available online via the Defence Export Control Office website: http://www.defence.gov.au/strategy/deco/.
Information on how to make Submissions, which are open until 29 August 2011, can be found at the Defence Export Control Office website. Submissions can be made to the Defence Export Control Office email address at DECO@defence.gov.au.
Mr Smith’s Office: Andrew Porter – (02) 6277 7800 or 0419 474 392
Mr Clare’s Office: Tim Quadrio – (02) 6277 7620 or 0401 976 269