Government to amend the Biosecurity Bill 2014
19 March 2015
The Government will move to amend the Biosecurity Bill 2014 in response to feedback by the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee as well as following further consultations with industry representatives.
Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said that the amendments would provide express, rather than implied, powers in the Bill for the Minister to appoint an Inspector-General of Biosecurity, making it a statutory position.
“I have been open and willing to listen to the views of all stakeholders throughout this process and I am confident that this change addresses concerns of the committee and satisfy the Opposition’s desire for the role to be enshrined in statute,” Minister Joyce said.
“The position of Inspector-General of Biosecurity was never in doubt under the Bill we tabled – nonetheless the Government has decided to include a specific provision in the Bill that provides for a statutory framework within which the Inspector-General of Biosecurity will operate.
“It is now vital that the Bill, as amended and supported by industry, be passed as soon as possible so that we can give the Department of Agriculture the tools and powers needed to protect our human, plant and animal health in the modern era,” Minister Joyce said today.