Doug Shave

Doug Shave

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    Increased safeguards for small business

    29/06/2000 1:50 PM
     
    29/06/00

    Fair Trading Minister Doug Shave has announced plans to increase protection for small businesses from unfair practices.

    “The proposed amendment to the Fair Trading Act will protect all types of small business in WA from unconscionable conduct,” Mr Shave said.

    “The proposal goes further than recent suggestions which would only protect small business retail lessees from such conduct.”

    The amendment is one recommendation to come from the Minister’s Small Business Safeguards Reference Group. The Group was established by the Minister to investigate ways to improve fair trading protection for small business.

    “The unconscionable conduct amendment to Western Australia’s Fair Trading Act will be similar to existing protection under the Commonwealth Government’s Trade Practices Act,” Mr Shave said.

    “However, it will overcome limitations on the type of small business covered by the Commonwealth legislation.

    "The proposed amendment would provide certainty for all businesses by creating uniform unconscionable conduct regulation for small businesses. For the first time, small businesses would have access to WA courts to protect their rights in this area."

    It is planned to release a “Green Bill” on the proposed amendment early in the Spring session of Parliament for public comment and consultation.

    The Minister said the Reference Group’s report, which contains other recommendations for the protection of small business, would be available from the Ministry of Fair Trading and its Internet site in the near future.

    “After the Green Bill is tabled in Parliament there will be a three month public consultation period.

    “This means all interested parties can comment on the Bill and other recommendations of the Reference Group before draft legislation is prepared,” Mr Shave said.

    Further information on the Green Bill and the Reference Group recommendations is available from the Ministry of Fair Trading on 9282 0895 or its website http://www.fairtrading.wa.gov.au.

    Media contact: John Clune Minister’s Office 9213 6500