Commonwealth Numbered Regulations - Explanatory Statements

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Select Legislative Instrument 2006 No. 115


Issued by the Authority of the Minister for Justice and Customs

Customs Act 1901

Customs (Prohibited Exports) Amendment Regulations 2006 (No. 1)

Subsection 270(1) of the Customs Act 1901 (the Act) provides in part that the Governor‑General may make regulations not inconsistent with the Act prescribing all matters which by the Act are required or permitted to be prescribed or as may be necessary or convenient to be prescribed for giving effect to the Act or for the conduct of any other business relating to the Customs.

Section 112 of the Act provides in part that the Governor-General may, by regulation, prohibit the exportation of goods from Australia and that the powers may be exercised by prohibiting the exportation of goods absolutely or by prohibiting the exportation of goods unless specified conditions or restrictions are complied with.

The Customs (Prohibited Exports) Regulations 1958 (the Principal Regulations) controls the exportation of specified goods for the purposes of the Act.

The purpose of the amending Regulations is to introduce export controls on an additional six chemicals, and to amend the description of five chemicals already controlled under the PE Regulations, that are subject to the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent (PIC) Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade (the Convention). These changes are in accordance with a decision by the Conference of Parties to the Convention made in September 2004 to include further chemicals, and amend the listing of chemicals already listed, as subject to export control under Annex III of the Convention.

Australia has ratified the Convention, which entered into force for Australia on 18 August 2004 and obliges Parties to control the export of chemicals and pesticides specified in Annex III.

To meet Australia’s international obligations under the Convention, the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Regulations 1995 (the AgVet Regulations) and the PE Regulations were amended in 2004 to introduce export controls on chemicals that are subject to the Convention.  Schedule 2 to the PE Regulations sets out the chemicals listed in Annex III.  Regulation 4A prohibits the export of chemicals listed in Schedule 2 to the PE Regulations unless:

(a)     permission is granted in accordance with the AgVet Regulations, where the chemical is   an active constituent or chemical product under the Agricultural     and Veterinary     Chemicals Code Act 1994; or

(b)     permission is granted by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, or an          authorised officer in any other case.

The amending Regulations also clarify that if the listing of a chemical in an item in Schedule 2 also describes a particular derivative of that chemical (the parent chemical):

(a)     that derivative is taken to be a chemical listed in Schedule 2; and

(b)     the reference to a CAS Registry Number for that item relates only to the parent chemical and not the derivative, which may have its own CAS Registry Number.

The amending Regulations also introduce into subregulation 2(1) of the PE Regulations, a definition of ‘CAS Registry Number’ to mirror the definition of that term in the AgVet Regulations.

The amending Regulations commence on 12 June 2006, the latest date by which Parties to the Rotterdam Convention are obliged to incorporate the changes into domestic legislation.


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