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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 05 Hansard (Wednesday, 12 May 2021) . . Page.. 1350 ..

Canberra means business, and the Better Regulation Taskforce shows that. It is here to talk to business and to systematically improve the conditions for starting and growing a business right here in Canberra. One of the task force’s first and most critical initiatives has been talking to business about how to talk to business; what methods, with what frequency, suit business owners best to have their views and concerns heard by government. This is work that will serve Canberra businesses well beyond the task force and will benefit everyone who runs or works in a business in the ACT, whether or not they have particular regulatory concerns.

The government is committed to ensuring that businesses are being heard, that the lines of communication between business and government are built to work for business, that talking to government about regulations that hinder starting, doing and growing business is not itself a regulatory hurdle. By engaging directly with industry, community and business, especially small business, the Better Regulation Taskforce is working to improve the ACT government’s rules, regulations, processes, information and support available for businesses.

The Better Regulation Taskforce is examining and applying lessons learned during the COVID-19 response, such as maintaining clear and open communication, prioritising adaptability and rapid action, and engaging with risk to achieve the best outcomes for businesses in the ACT. The immediate focus of the task force is to identify processes or regulatory issues that create a burden for business, and which can be reformed or simplified.

The Better Regulation Taskforce has a range of current work and priorities. It is undertaking a wide-ranging legislative review to identify reform opportunities and ensure there are regulatory settings which support best practice. Further, the Better Regulation Taskforce will expand digital solutions for government and business operations and continue removing barriers to investment in the territory.

The Better Regulation Taskforce is drawing on lessons from previous reform programs from across the country, and leading ACT involvement in national reforms emerging from the commonwealth’s Deregulation Taskforce. The task force is also working directly with businesses in the ACT to deal with regulatory issues or delays that individual businesses are facing in real time.

Since the Better Regulation Taskforce’s commencement, officials have met with many businesses and representatives directly to seek to get straight to the issue and improve the regulatory landscape. Groups such as Canberra Women in Business, the Canberra Business Chamber and precinct groups have been able to seek assistance and guidance from the task force.

Specific questions about government processes from individual businesses have been answered, quickly enabling the businesses to understand and move forward. For example, the Mitchell Traders Association has met directly with me and with task force officials and discussed the diverse economic activity in the Mitchell precinct. I thank the Mitchell Traders Association for their willingness to discuss

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