Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2000 Week 10 Hansard (18 October) . . Page.. 3168 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):

technology. The application of these principles will ensure that the Bill does not require constant amendment to deal with technological changes.

Importantly, Mr Speaker, ACT government agencies will be able to specify their particular information technology requirements before accepting electronic communications to satisfy requirements or permissions under ACT law. This means that ACT agencies can receive information in a form that is most appropriate for the type of transaction, or for which the entity has the relevant technology, to enable it to receive the communication.

Mr Speaker, the Bill adopts a minimalist approach to the regulation of electronic transactions. It establishes the basic rule that a transaction is not invalid just because it took place by means of one or more electronic communications. It contains specific provisions stating that a requirement or permission under a law of the Territory for a person to provide information in writing, to sign a document, to produce a document, to record information or to retain a document can be satisfied by electronic communication, subject to minimum criteria being satisfied. Those criteria establish objective tests that are based on criteria of reliability and reasonableness.

The Bill also makes clear that the conduct of electronic transactions will require the prior consent of parties. That consent may be inferred from conduct or given subject to certain conditions. This comprises an electronic method that identifies the person and shows their approval of the contents of the document to a reliable level in the circumstances. Digital signatures are an example of a technology that currently performs these functions.

A regulation making power has been included to enable the government to respond to any issues that may arise in the future.

Mr Speaker, this Bill proposes a legal and regulatory strategy for electronic transactions; a strategy which will place both the public and private sectors of the ACT community in the best possible position to take advantage of the domestic, national and global market opportunities that electronic commerce offers.

I commend the Bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Quinlan ) adjourned.


Mr Humphries , on behalf of the Attorney-General, presented the bill and its explanatory memorandum.

Title read by Acting Clerk.

MR HUMPHRIES (Chief Minister) (11.31): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

I ask for leave to have the presentation speech incorporated in Hansard.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .