2nd March, 2018 · Consumer Affairs Policy

Used and Parallel imports

Issue

The Road Vehicle Standards Bill 2018 replaces the Motor Vehicle Standards Act 1989 (MVSA) and strengthens and modernises the current legislative framework. It prohibits the provision of a road vehicle in Australia unless that vehicle is entered on an electronic database called the Register of Approved Vehicles (the RAV) or an exemption applies. There are two pathways for entry on the RAV – type approval pathway and concessional pathway. AADA supports passage of the Bill which gives effect to Government policy objectives of:

  • Community protection (through vehicles that are safe and have low emissions);
  • Consumer protection (through vehicles that meet buyers’ expectations and are theft resistant); and
  • Competition (through vehicles that are readily available and reasonably priced).

Background

The Bill will not allow the personal importation of new motor vehicles from the United Kingdom and Japan, and large-scale imports of used vehicles. In 2017 there were approximately 1.2 million new vehicles sold in Australia and used imported vehicles accounted for less than 2 per cent of vehicles entering the Australian market for the first time. The average age of vehicles registered in Australia is 10.1 years

Type approval will allow unrestricted volumes of new vehicles into Australia which are fully compliant with national vehicle standards and equipped with the latest safety and emissions technology. The concessional entry pathway will allow the importation of vehicles not otherwise available in Australia if certain criteria are met.

The Bill maintains and strengthens the Australia’s high new vehicle standards and a report commissioned by the Australian Automobile Association found that by lowering the vehicle fleet age by one year, up to 1,377 lives would be saved, 5.4% of road crashes would be avoided, and road trauma and emission reduction benefits would amount to $19.7 billion over 20 years.

Key Points

The Bill will strengthen and modernise the regulatory framework governing the provision of road vehicles in Australia.

The community and consumer benefits of not allowing the personal importation of new vehicles and large-scale imports of used vehicles include rejuvenation of the Australian vehicle fleet, saving of lives, avoidance of road crashes through new technology, and road trauma and emissions reduction benefits.

Status

On 7 February 2018, the Bill was introduced into the Parliament and is at the 2nd reading stage. AADA urges the Parliament to pass the Bill.