On 18 August 2016 the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) requested the ACCC’s advice on possible amendments to the Basin Plan water trading rules, which form Chapter 12 of the Basin Plan 2012 (Cth). These rules relate to the trading or transfer of tradeable water rights relating to Murray-Darling Basin water resources. Under the Water Act 2007 (Cth) the MDBA is required to obtain and have regard to advice by the ACCC when making or amending the water trading rules (s46(2)).
The MDBA’s request for advice was limited to specific sections of the water trading rules. The MDBA requested that the ACCC provide advice on opportunities to amend these rules to clarify drafting ambiguities and ensure these rules can function as originally intended. As such, the ACCC has not undertaken a comprehensive review of the water trading rules.
The ACCC delivered its advice to MDBA in October 2016. The MDBA publicly released this advice on 22 November 2016, as part of its release of draft amendments to the Basin Plan for public consultation. Further information is available via the MDBA website.
The MDBA is responsible for monitoring and enforcing compliance with the water trading rules.