The Territories Legislation Amendment Bill 2020 (the Bill) has passed Parliament and – after receiving Royal Assent – will become law, bringing regulation of companies, bankruptcy and broadcasting in Norfolk Island into line with the rest of Australia.
For Norfolk Island companies, the changes ensure they operate under a modern legislative framework and have improved access to business financing opportunities. This will assist the island to respond and adapt to pressures associated with COVID-19.
Before the laws come into full effect, there will be a period of transition to ensure there is time to prepare for the changes. Regulatory agencies will engage directly with Norfolk Island residents and businesses to assist the transition to the new arrangements.
The new laws will transition companies currently registered under local Norfolk Island law to the Commonwealth corporations framework. This will reduce red tape for Norfolk Island businesses and make it easier for you to access mainland suppliers, financial and other support.
One of the most important changes from the Bill is ensuring Norfolk Island residents have rights and responsibilities that are comparable to other Australian communities – including in relation to bankruptcy.
The new laws also mean more support for Norfolk Island’s local media by bringing Norfolk Island radio and television stations under Commonwealth broadcasting law.
The Bill reflects the Government’s ongoing commitment to supporting economic sustainability and growth in Norfolk Island and in all Australian territories.