Australia: New agvet chemical legislation commenced 7 March 2022

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07 March 2021, Australia: On 7 March 2022, 7 new measures from the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Legislation Amendment (Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority Board and Other Improvements) Act 2021 commenced. These include measures to:

  • provide for extensions to limitation periods and protection periods as an incentive for chemical companies to register certain new uses of chemical products – particularly those uses (minor uses) with insufficient commercial return for chemical companies to normally add to the product label (part 3)
  • reduce the regulatory burden by enabling the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) to grant part of a variation application under section 27 of the Schedule to the Code Act (part 7)
  • enable a person to apply to vary an approval or registration that is suspended, to the extent that the variation relates to the grounds for suspension (part 8)
  • establish civil pecuniary penalties for contraventions of provisions in the Agvet Code and the Administration Act relating to providing false or misleading information to the APVMA (part 9)
  • provide the APVMA with more comprehensive grounds for suspending or cancelling approvals or registrations where information is provided in a variation application that is false or misleading (part 10)
  • optimise risk communication about chemical products by improving the transparency of voluntary recalls (part 11)
  • harmonise the need to inform the APVMA of new information (where it relates to the safety criteria) so that the same obligations apply to all holders and applicants (part 12).

A list of all measures in the Improvements Act, and the expected implementation dates is available on the APVMA website.

In relation to the establishment of a new APVMA Board, on 3 March 2022, the Governor-General signed the proclamation that brought these changes into effect. As a result, from 4 March 2022, the Accountable Authority of the APVMA is the Board under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability (PGPA) Act 2013.

No announcement has been made at this stage regarding the Board members.

Also Read: Launch of new climate-smart desert farming in the CWANA region

The APVMA will continue to keep stakeholders updated as measures commence and Board members are announced. Stakeholders are encouraged to subscribe(link is external) to receive email updates from the APVMA to be notified as this occurs.

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