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Legislation


National Regulatory Scheme for Genetically Modified Organisms

The nationally consistent legislative scheme for gene technology is comprised of the Commonwealth Gene Technology Act 2000 and Gene Technology Regulations 2001, and corresponding State and Territory legislation.

The legislation was developed in consultation with all Australian jurisdictions and the scheme is supported by the inter-governmental Gene Technology Agreement 2001 between the Australian Government and each State and Territory.

The Commonwealth Gene Technology legislation took effect on 21 June 2001 and consists of the following:

    Please note: Symbols for LD50 values
    Some devices may read symbols incorrectly in Word and possibly HTML and PDF. The Greek letter ‘mu’ is used in five provisions (LD50) in the Gene Technology Regulations 2001 as part of a recognised international symbol indicating ‘micrograms’. This symbol is usually displayed correctly. However, some devices may display it incorrectly, making units read as ‘mg’ (milligrams), which significantly changes the meaning of the legislation. ‘mg’ is not used in the Gene Technology Regulations 2001. The definitive legal PDF versions, where the problem will not occur on most devices, can be accessed from the ‘Download’ tab on ComLaw web pages linked from the OGTR website.

The Commonwealth legislation incorporates the following amendments: More information on the amendments is available on the OGTR Legislation Review Process web page and Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2011

The following legislative instruments support the Commonwealth legislation:

Corresponding State Laws

Gene Technology Act 2001 - Victoria
Gene Technology Regulations 2011 - Victoria
Gene Technology Act 2001 - South Australia
Gene Technology Regulations 2002 - South Australia
Gene Technology Act 2001 - Queensland
Gene Technology Regulation 2002 - Queensland
Gene Technology Act 2003 - Australian Capital Territory
Gene Technology Regulation 2004 - Australian Capital Territory
Gene Technology (New South Wales) Act 2003 - New South Wales
Gene Technology Act 2004 - Northern Territory
Gene Technology (Tasmania) Act 2012 - Tasmania

State and Territory law declared by the Minister for Health and Ageing to correspond to the Commonwealth Gene Technology Act 2000 (HTML)
State and Territory law declared by the Minister for Health and Ageing to correspond to the Commonwealth Gene Technology Act 2000 (PDF 825 KB)

2011 Independent Review of the Gene Technology Act 2000

On 23 December 2011, the Gene Technology Ministerial Council* (GTMC) publicly released a report outlining the findings of its latest Review of the Gene Technology Act 2000.

The Terms of Reference for the 2011 Independent Review and a call for public submissions were published on the GTMC website on 24 May 2011.

The All Governments’ response to the 2011 review, the review report and submissions received, together with further information about the review, are available from the LGFGT Secretariat and via the Department of Health website.
* Note that the GTMC is now known as the Legislative and Governance Forum on Gene Technology

Regulator's Review of the Gene Technology Regulations 2011

Following a review of the Regulations by the Gene Technology Regulator initiated in 2008, the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2011 (the Amendment Regulations) were made on 2 June 2011. The Amendment Regulations commenced on 1 September 2011.

More information on the amendments is available under the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2011 webpage

Documents produced in the development of the Acts

Explanatory Memorandum for the Gene Technology Amendment Bill 2007

Explanatory Memorandum to the Gene Technology Bill 2000 (including Regulation Impact Statement)

Explanatory Memorandum to the Gene Technology (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2000

Explanatory Memorandum to the Gene Technology (Licence Charges) Bill 2000

Explanatory Guide to the Commonwealth Gene Technology Bill 2000 (plain English guide to the Gene Technology Bill 2000) (HTML)
Explanatory Guide to the Commonwealth Gene Technology Bill 2000 (plain English guide to the Gene Technology Bill 2000) (PDF 178 KB)

Report of the Statutory Review of the Gene Technology Act 2000 and the Gene Technology Agreement 2001

State, Territory and Australian Governments' Response to the Recommendations of the Statutory Review of the Gene Technology Act 2000 and the Gene Technology Agreement 2001

Documents produced in the development of the Regulations

Explanatory Statement for the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2011

Explanatory Statement for the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2009

Explanatory Statement for the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2007

Explanatory Statement for the Gene Technology Amendment Regulations 2006

Explanatory Statement to the Gene Technology Regulations 2001

Regulation Impact Statement on the Gene Technology Regulations 2001 (HTML)
Regulation Impact Statement on the Gene Technology Regulations 2001 (PDF 70 KB) Top of page