Commonwealth Numbered Regulations - Explanatory Statements

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Issued by the Authority of the Minister for Customs. and Consumer Affairs

Commerce (Trade Descriptions) Act 1905

Commerce (Imports) Regulations (Amendment)

Section 17 of the Commerce (Trade Descriptions) Act 1905 (the Act) provides in part that the Governor-General may make regulations prescribing all matters and things required or permitted by the Act to be prescribed or which are necessary and convenient to be prescribed for carrying out or giving effect to this Act.

Section 7 of the Act provides that the Commerce (Imports) Regulations (the Regulations) may prohibit the importation or introduction into Australia of any goods unless there is applied to them a trade description of such character, and applied in such manner, as is prescribed.

Paragraph 7(1)(f) of the Regulations prohibits the importation of shoes unless there is applied to them a trade description in accordance with the Regulations.

Regulation 15B of the prescribes the trade description requirements for shoes.

Subregulation 15B(3) requires the trade description of the shoe to be stamped, imprinted or embossed on the shoe in clearly legible letters not less than 2.5mm in height at certain positions on the shoe.

Subregulation 15B(4) states that where the material of the shoe does not reasonably allow for the trade description to be stamped, imprinted, or embossed on it. the trade description must be stamped, imprinted or impressed on a label of rubber, plastic or durable cloth affixed to the shoe by means of vulcanisation or adhesion.

The footwear industry raised concerns that subregulations 15B(3) and 15B(4) do not reflect current international labelling practice. The current international practice is to:

(a) sew the required trade description to the tongue of the shoe; and

(b) mark the shoe with the required trade description using labels made from laminated paper.

In order to bring the Regulations into fine with current international labelling practices, the Government has effected the following amendments to the Regulations:

*       subregulation 15B(3) was amended to permit trade descriptions to, be sewn to the tongue of the shoe; and

*       subregulation 15B(4) was amended to include the use of labels made from any other durable materials in addition to rubber, plastic or durable cloth already

permitted under subregulation 15B(4) and to provide for the attachment of the label to the shoe by any secure means besides vulcanization or adhesion.

Details of the Regulations are as follows.

The Regulations are to commence on 1 March 1998 (Regulation l refers) so as to comply with subsection 7(4) of the Act, which requires regulations made under section 7 of the Act to take effect after the expiration of not less than 3 months from notification in the Gazette.

Regulation 2 provided that the Commerce (Imports) Regulations are amended as set out in the Regulations.

Regulation 3 omitted subregulations 15B(3) and 15B(4) and substituted new subregulations 15B(3) and 15B(4).

The new subregulation 15B(3) inserted a new paragraph (d) to the former subregulation 15B(3) to provide a new location on the shoe - the tongue of the shoe -where the trade description is to be impressed or embossed.

The new subregulation 15B(4) provided for the label to be, attached to the shoe to be made of any other durable material in addition to the existing material of rubber, plastic and durable cloth. The new subregulation 15B(4) also allowed the label to be attached to the shoe by any other secure means besides the current method of vulcanisation or adhesion. This is to provide for any future method of attaching the labels made of other durable material that is incapable of being attached to the shoe by vulcanisation or adhesion.

The new subregulations 15B(3) and 15B(4) also effected minor technical amendments to subregulations 15B(3), and 15B(4) consequential to a change in the drafting style of the subregulations.

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