Accountability

The ACCC exercises its powers as a competition, consumer and regulatory agency in a transparent and accountable manner. Our approach to accountability spans the establishment of the ACCC, the appointment of Commissioners and staff, corporate planning, proper standards for investigative procedures, and public reporting of decisions and outcomes. Our commitment to accountability is supported by governance and management structures and both internal and government wide systems and processes.

Position statement on COVID-19

The ACCC and AER are taking a range of precautionary measures to support our people and stakeholders during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. We are actively working with Government and agencies in the Treasury portfolio.

While nearly all of our teams are working from home, we are confident we are appropriately managing risk across the ACCC and AER so we are able to continue to fulfil our statutory obligations and duties.

The ACCC is highly conscious of the impact COVID-19 is having on Australian consumers and businesses and has adjusted the focus of our regulatory activities accordingly.

Office closures

While we remain open for business, all ACCC and AER offices are closed to external visitors. Signs have been erected in our offices advising this and contact details have been provided for urgent matters.

Organisational priorities

Corporate Plan

The ACCC and AER corporate plan sets out the agency's key strategies, performance measures and capabilities to support our core purposes for the next four years.

Compliance and Enforcement Policy

The Compliance and Enforcement Policy sets out the principles adopted by the ACCC to achieve compliance with the law, and outlines our enforcement powers, functions, priorities, strategies and regime.

Regulator Performance Framework

The Australian Government’s Regulator Performance Framework (RPF) has established a common set of six key performance indicators that allow for the assessment of Commonwealth regulators’ performance in administering regulation.

Disability Action Plan

The ACCC/AER supports staff with both mental and physical disabilities to develop and contribute to their full potential in an environment of inclusion and respect.

Budget statements

ACCC budget statements are held on the Treasury and Commonwealth Budget websites.

Media code of conduct

This code of conduct relates to the ACCC’s enforcement activities (excluding mergers) which include actions the ACCC takes to identify, investigate, prosecute and resolve potential breaches of Part IV of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 and the Australian Consumer Law (Schedule 2 to the Act).

Child safety policy

The ACCC/AER is committed to the safety and wellbeing of children and young people in connection with our work and with our employees. This policy reflect the ACCC/AER’s commitment to the Commonwealth Child Safe Framework and the practical application across the agency.

Reconciliation Action Plan

This Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) sets out the ACCC and AER’s commitment to achieving a vision for reconciliation, through our activities and personal commitment, to closing gaps in employment and consumer protection between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians.

Commitment to service

Service Charter

The Service Charter sets out the standards of service the public may expect from the ACCC and the steps they may take if these standards are not met.

Government expectations

This statement outlines the Government’s expectations about the role and responsibilities of the ACCC, its relationship with the Government, issues of transparency and accountability and operational matters.

ACCC - Statement of expectations ( PDF 94.88 KB | DOCX 24.01 KB )

This Statement of Intent responds to the Government’s Statement of Expectations for the ACCC.

ACCC - Statement of intent ( PDF 97.62 KB | DOCX 45.74 KB )

An independent ACCC

Code of conduct for Commission members and associate members

There are conduct guidelines for Commission members and associate members.

Code of Conduct for Commission Members and Associate Members 2019 ( PDF 706.25 KB )

In accordance with the Code of Conduct, Chair Rod Sims released the following statement on 1 August 2013:

ACCC Chair gives control of RM Williams Agricultural Holdings shares to attorney ( PDF 5.09 KB )

Staff of the ACCC

Staff of the ACCC are members of the Australian Public Service and employed under the Public Service Act 1999. As public servants engaged under this Act, ACCC staff must adhere to the Australian Public Service Code of Conduct and Values (the Code). There are procedures to apply in determining whether an ACCC employee has breached the Code and, if so, in determining any sanction to be imposed on the employee.

Procedures for determining breaches of the code of conduct and for determining sanction ( PDF 1.13 MB )

Guidelines for determining breaches of the code of conduct and for determining sanction ( PDF 275.01 KB )

ACCC staff must also follow and abide by Australian Government legislation which ensures Australian Government employees act in an accountable and transparent manner and in the public interest. The Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013, for example, sets out the financial management, accountability and audit obligations of agencies that are financially part of the Commonwealth.

In addition, the ACCC’s enterprise agreement, which is negotiated between ACCC staff and management, outlines the terms and conditions of employment at the ACCC and is available from Working with us.

Acceptance of gifts and hospitality

The ACCC Gifts and Hospitality Policy outlines our responsibilities, including what to accept, what to decline and what to declare.

ACCC commissioners and staff do not accept any gifts, hospitality or benefits that give rise to an actual conflict of interest. 

Gifts, hospitality or benefits that are accepted are declared on our Gifts and Hospitality Register and the data collected is published below.

Gifts and hospitality policy ( PDF 266.2 KB )

2 January 2020 to 31 March 2020

ACCC commissioners gifts and hospitality register ( PDF 183.74 KB )

1 August 2019 to 2 January 2020

ACCC staff gifts and hospitality register ( PDF 287.9 KB )

ACCC commissioners gifts and hospitality register ( PDF 287.54 KB )

1 May 2019 to 31 July 2019

ACCC staff gifts and hospitality register ( PDF 201.57 KB )

ACCC commissioners gifts and hospitality register ( PDF 228.53 KB )

Accountability framework for investigations

The ACCC has a number of systems, processes and governance and management structures in place which enable it to exercise its powers as a competition and consumer agency in an accountable and transparent manner.

The ACCC’s investigative process consists of different stages and timeframes.

Public reporting

Annual reports

The ACCC and AER annual reports provide a summary of our achievements and activities.

ACCCount

A quarterly report of the ACCC's activities.

Legal expenditure

A statement of external legal services expenditure by the ACCC for the financial year ended 30th June 2015, published in compliance with paragraph 11.1 (ba) of the Legal Services Directions 2005.

Tenders and contracts

The ACCC manages and reports its tenders and procurements in accordance with the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013.

Executive remuneration

As a Commonwealth Entity we provide an annual update on the remuneration paid to the executives in the Commission.

Public interest disclosure

Legislation for a public interest disclosure scheme commenced on 15 January 2014. The ACCC has established agency procedures for dealing with public interest disclosures.

Information handling

Freedom of information (FOI)

The ACCC's Freedom of Information website contains required information under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 including the Information Publication Scheme (IPS), Disclosure Log, and information on FOI access requests.

Privacy statement

The ACCC has a Privacy statement in line with the Privacy Act 1988 and the Information Privacy Principles contained in that Act.

Indexed file lists

Indexed file lists created in accordance with Senate Continuing Order No 10. The lists are tabled twice a year and are in file number order.

Fraud prevention

The ACCC is committed to promoting and maintaining an organisation free from fraud.