Margaret Quirk

Margaret Quirk

Minister for Corrective Services; Small Business

    State Government endorses Franchise Report recommendations

    20/05/2008 12:00 AM

    The State Government has endorsed 19 out of 20 recommendations made by an independent inquiry into Western Australia’s franchise businesses, Small Business Minister Margaret Quirk said today.


    Ms Quirk said she would take the State-endorsed report to the annual meeting of the Small Business Ministerial Council (SBMC) this week.


    “The main thrust of the report - to strengthen issues relating to end-of-agreement arrangements and matters surrounding the non-renewal of franchise agreements - were welcomed,” she said.


    “The State Government also endorsed an additional recommendation to request that the Federal Government continue to consider the introduction of a well-defined obligation for parties to bargain and negotiate in ‘good faith’ as part of the franchising code of conduct.”


    The Minister said the report had noted that existing franchising regulations did not specifically address end-of-agreement arrangements and had recommended legislative change by the Federal Government to address these perceived shortcomings.


    The report also recommended that the Federal Government amend the Franchising Code of Conduct to make it compulsory for parties in dispute to attend mediation procedures and to ensure that mediation agreements were enforceable with prescribed penalties set out for non-compliance.


    “Franchising is one of the fastest-growing and most dynamic sectors in the Australian economy and we want to foster its continued healthy growth,” Ms Quirk said.


    “In 2005, national franchising industry turnover was estimated to be worth $128billion. It is estimated that there are more than 62,000 franchises in Australia, employing more than 600,000 Australians.”


    Minister's office - (08) 9213 7000