Mandatory access to auto data to become law

Australian motorists will have genuine choice in who repairs their vehicles now the Australian Government has committed to enshrine in law the mandatory sharing of automotive data between vehicle manufacturers and all automotive repairers.

The Federal Government is set to introduce a new mandatory data sharing law that will provide fair and equitable access to motor vehicle service and repair information. The law will revitalise automotive service and repair businesses and transform consumer choice.

The government announced its decision during a specially convened meeting between peak automotive bodies with Federal Assistant Treasurer the Hon. Michael Sukkar MP and Treasury Department officials in Melbourne.

The Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC) has been at the forefront of a long campaign to bring about change for consumers and automotive service and repair businesses.

“VACC, along with its national body the Motor Trades Association of Australia, worked hard to gather insights and case examples from businesses, including independent repairers, new-car franchised dealers, motor body repairers, and dismantlers and recyclers, on how restricted access to critical vehicle manufacturer service and repair information hampers consumer choice and contributes to an uncompetitive and unfair playing field,” said VACC CEO, Geoff Gwilym.

Mr Gwilym said VACC, over a long period of time, also arranged business and workshop visits for many parliamentarians and stakeholders, analysed international jurisdictions, and engaged experts from the USA to assist in preparing a draft Code of Conduct.

Through MTAA, VACC facilitated an industry Heads of Agreement, and provided comprehensive submissions to parliamentary inquiries and investigations by government departments, agencies and regulators, including the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), of the need for stronger government intervention.

“VACC congratulates Minister Sukkar on his leadership in finalising government’s response to this critical issue and in addressing a recommendation of the ACCC for a mandated and prescribed scheme,” Gwilym said.

VACC acknowledges the work of MTAA and the commitment of other peak automotive organisations for their contributions to the decision: Australian Automobile Dealers Association; Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association; Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries; and Australian Automobile Association.

“The industry has committed to working with government and each other to finalise input into legislation and the Australian automotive sector’s role in making the new law work,” said Mr Gwilym.

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