NSW to establish a Productivity Commission


New South Wales will soon establish its first ever Productivity Commission to drive microeconomic reform and tackle burdensome regulation

Dominic Perrottet Treasurer Minister for Industrial RelationsTreasurer Dominic Perrottet (image right) made the announcement at the New South Wales Business Chamber, saying the Commission will aim to expand the state’s economic prosperity.

“We have laid the the foundations for reform with our state-building infrastructure agenda, but now it’s time for a new wave of growth, to lift the fortunes of our state and its people,” Mr Perrottet said.

“We need ongoing reform to continue to fuel our state’s economy and improve living standards for everyone who lives and works here. The Productivity Commission will advocate for micro-economic reform to drive productivity and regulatory improvements and identify regulations that hold us back.”

The NSW Business Chamber has estimated businesses spend over $10 billion each year complying with regulations across all levels of government.

The Commission, led by the NSW Productivity Commissioner, will spearhead a reform agenda, focused on four core themes:

  • Making it easier to do business
  • Lowering the cost of living
  • Making housing more affordable
  • Making NSW the easiest state to move to

An expert panel chaired by former NSW Premier the Hon Nick Greiner, commissioned to review NSW’s regulatory policy framework, recommended the appointment of a Commissioner to oversee regulatory quality in NSW.
The NSW Commission will be set up with the aid and advice of eminent Professor Gary Banks, former head of the Commonwealth Productivity Commission. 

The current head of the Commonwealth Productivity Commission Peter Harris said “The development of a Productivity Commission-style body in NSW should be very helpful in addressing the kinds of reform opportunities in the Commonwealth-State environment that we have identified in our 2017 Shifting the Dial report”.

Mr Perrottet said the Commissioner will ensure a user-centred approach to regulationthat is responsive to users’ needs and changes in the market.

“This means a light touch approach that is focused on outcomes rather than on rules,” Mr Perrottet said.

“The public will also be able to have its say on how government processes can be improved and what we can do to make it easier to live, work and run a business in NSW.”

An online portal will follow the announcement of the Commissioner, allowing citizens and businesses to identify the most important regulatory roadblocks, and provide fresh ideas to reduce the burden.