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The Simplified Trade System (STS) Industry Advisory Council (IAC) met in Melbourne on 1 September 2023.

The IAC Chair, Mr Paul Little AO, opened the meeting and welcomed members. The IAC Chair expressed his appreciation to members for their strategic guidance and valuable insights in supporting the Australian Government and the STS Implementation Taskforce (the Taskforce) in progressing STS reforms.

Mr Randall Brugeaud, Head of the Taskforce, provided an update on the progress of the STS reforms and ongoing initiatives. Mr Brugeaud noted release of the STS Consultation Paper and highlighted the broad support for the highlevel vision of the future state of crossborder trade in Australia across all stakeholder groups. There was broad recognition that the STS Summit held on 26 June 2023 was an excellent event and important milestone in the STS reform journey. Mr Brugeaud emphasised the critical role of ongoing collaboration in ensuring the success of the STS reform agenda to achieving the STS reform vision.

A set of strategic discussions was facilitated by Mr Little and Mr Brugeaud seeking member feedback and advice on opportunities for reform. The discussions recognised the critical role of industry in designing and implementing reforms and consideration of potential options to continue strong collaboration between industry and government.

The importance of investing in reforms that deliver early benefits to business and the Australian economy was also discussed. But it was acknowledged that it would take time to achieve the full benefits of the reforms. IAC members also noted the importance of leveraging international stakeholders to learn from their experience and partner in design and implementation.

Representatives from partner agencies, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and Australian Border Force provided updates on their STS-related initiatives and broader work programs.

In closing the meeting Mr Little acknowledged the work of the Taskforce and their commitment to ongoing engagement with business. Mr Little also thanked members for their ongoing support for the STS reforms.


You can download this communique using this link. (PDF)