12th March, 2021 ยท Media Release

Australia’s Car Dealers Welcome
Landmark Reforms to Automotive

The peak body representing franchised new car Dealers has welcomed the Morrison Government’s landmark reforms to the automotive franchising landscape.

The Government today announced momentous reforms for the automotive industry, which will protect Dealers against the worst abuses by some car companies.

“Today’s announcement will be welcomed by automotive Dealers and their 60,000 employees all across Australia. It will give these local businesses the confidence to employ more Australians, take on more apprentices, invest in their communities and continue to support local sporting teams and charities,” AADA CEO James Voortman said.

“These changes will bring a degree of balance to the relationships between new car Dealers and the Manufacturers to which they are franchised. The reforms are sensible and fair and will bring all Manufacturers up to the standard already being employed by ethically-minded car brands operating in Australia,” he said.

“Mandating the principles for new Dealer agreements, ensuring agency agreements are captured by these regulations and setting appropriate fines for breaches of the Franchising Code are all very welcome measures. Only Manufacturers who ride roughshod over Australian Dealers will have anything to fear from what has been announced today,” Mr Voortman said.

“We also look forward to participating in the further work flagged by the Government on the merits of a stand-alone automotive code, binding arbitration and unfair contract terms,” he said.

“It has been a difficult 12 months for automotive Dealers with General Motors’ termination of 185 Holden Dealers and significant changes flagged by a number of other Manufacturers. The industry is in a state of rapid change and all Dealers ask is that major changes see Manufacturers engage in a fair process and provide adequate compensation,” he said.

“Dealers in regional towns and cities all across the country will be thanking the Morrison Government. In particular we would like to thank the Minister for Small and Family Business Michaelia Cash for sticking up for Australia’s Dealers and working closely with the industry,” Mr Voortman said.

“During the pandemic, the Morrison Government has helped our industry with JobKeeper, support for apprentices and investment incentives. Today’s changes will further enable the industry to take advantage of the recovering economy,” he said.

“Automotive dealerships are important local businesses which employ Australians, invest in Australia and pay their tax in Australia. Dealers look forward to healthy commercial relationships with their Manufacturers, so we can continue to bring many benefits to Australian consumers and communities,” he said.

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