Frequently Asked Questions
Queensland Resources and Energy Sector Code of Practice for Local Content
Does the code have the support of the resources sector, state government and supplier groups?
The code was endorsed by the Board of the Queensland Resources Council – the resource sector’s peak representative body – on 15 February 2013. The state government has also endorsed the code. The QRC consulted a number of supplier groups when developing the code.
Who will administer the code?
The code is a voluntary, self-regulatory, industry led initiative. The QRC secretariat will provide the ‘day-to-day’ administration of the code as well as facilitate an annual forum of stakeholders to discuss local content developments and practices; promote the code to its membership; and complete annually a Code Effectiveness Report which will become a public document. The secretariat’s actions will be guided by the Code Steering Committee and ultimately the QRC Board.
What is the timeline for the main actions that are proposed?
While in reality many resource companies were already meeting the tenet of the code before its inception on 1 March 2013, other significant timelines under the code include:
- QRC member companies to lodge their Code Industry Reports by 30 September (annually)
- QRC secretariat facilitates an annual Local Industry Participation Forum of stakeholders by mid November (annually)
- QRC secretariat produces and disseminates a QRC Board paper outlining the sector’s progress against the code with recommendations for improvement (as suggested by the Code Steering Committee in consultation with the sector) by mid November (annually)
- QRC secretariat produces and disseminates publicly a report on the effectiveness of the code and complementary government policies and programs (i.e. Code Effectiveness Report) by year end (annually)
- QRC secretariat in conjunction with the state government will facilitate a formal review of the code by end 2015.
Who does the code apply to and what will happen from 1 March 2013?
The code is of particular relevance to those significant resources and energy investment projects proceeding through the Queensland Government’s Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) processes (Coordinator General or Department of Environment and Heritage Protection). From 1 March 2013, these agencies in approving resources and energy projects will seek commitments from companies to adhere to the code. Queensland-operating resources and energy companies may opt to apply the code to the operations phase also. The state government may also consider upon request modifying local content EIS project conditions retrospectively to bring resources companies ‘under’ the code. The QRC secretariat will actively encourage its members to comply with the code, including making the necessary changes to reporting capabilities etc. The secretariat will also continue its preparations to bring the administrative framework that supports the code into effect
Why is a code a better instrument than regulation, and mandating, to promote local content in resource projects?
The code and supporting administration and reporting frameworks will bring the following benefits:
- improved information sharing that will enable resources companies to choose approaches that best suit their circumstances
- provides a formal means for the sector to provide feedback on supplier capabilities and further government programs that in the main seek to assist the capability and capacity of suppliers
- a formal means for representatives of supplier groups to share their views
- a reduction in regulation which will free up available resources to do more value-add activities
- through regular quantitative and qualitative reporting, an enhanced ability to observe progress and respond as required
- improved engagement with industry
Does compliance with the code also satisfy the Australian Government’s local content obligations?
Resources and energy companies are still required to meet the specific principles of the Australian Industry Participation Framework and complete an Australian Industry Participation Plan (AIPP) when accessing the Australian Government’s Enhanced Project By-law Scheme (EPBS) or receiving Commonwealth Government financial support as part of a project. Given the nature of these obligations, it is considered that companies that are compliant with the AIPP would be able to meet the obligations of the code comfortably. Companies in completing their AIPPs are also requested to complete a Code Industry Report under the code as the information requirements are complementary but somewhat different.