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Law Council of Australia

Business Law Section

Digital Platforms Consultation On Regulatory Reform

The Business Law Section provided a submission to Treasury in response to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Digital Platforms regulatory reform consultation. 

The key matters the Section wishes to bring to Treasury’s attention are as follows:

(a) The introduction of any industry-specific legislation should not be duplicative and the principles of regulatory best practice developed by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) should be applied in the development of any digital platform regulation.

(b) In order to reduce uncertainty and unintended consequences, the Section submits that it is critical to consider the sequencing and consistency of law reform proposals that impact the digital economy. Any digital platforms law reform proposals should be developed in light of, and in a consistent manner with, current law reform proposals in relation to the digital economy—including efforts in relation to privacy law reform, eSafety law reform, misinformation and disinformation reform, unfair contract law reform, the implementation of the National Anti-Scams Centre, initiatives in relation to Digital Identity, and copyright enforcement reform. Additionally, the differing information and cyber security standards that may emerge between suppliers in supply chains that may include critical infrastructure (bound by the Security of Critical Infrastructure Act 2018 (Cth) (SOCI Act) and rules, including data storage and processing sectors, research sectors and communications sectors). The Section observes the risk of unintentionally reducing competition in the digital economy where ‘digital’ is the common denominator but the ability to meet higher regulatory standards is inequitable.


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