Australia is currently working towards a new streamlined and national approach to occupational licensing. The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) has agreed to implement new measures to enable greater workforce mobility and reduce the regulatory burden for industry and for workers possessing vocationally trained trade qualifications.
The reforms fall into three main categories:
- the mutual recognition and harmonisation of occupational licences across Australia
- the integration of the training and assessment requirements for occupational licensing into nationally recognised vocational education and training (VET)
- the establishment of a national licensing system.
A key undertaking of the COAG reform agenda is ensuring full mutual recognition of occupational licensing across Australia. This means that states and territories are improving arrangements to increase the entitlement of a person licensed in one state or territory to register in another jurisdiction where the registered occupation is substantially the same.
Agreement has been reached on full and effective mutual recognition in a number priority areas with all licensed trades scheduled for mutual recognition by 31 December 2008. As part of this work, licence classifications are being rationalised and harmonised across all states and territories.
Find out more on the work which is being undertaken on mutual recognition and harmonisation of occupational licensing.
Improving the alignment between the licensing and training systems has been identified as a key priority in occupational licensing reform. Historically, training and assessment for licensing and regulatory purposes have been conducted separately to vocational education and training for a qualification outcome.
The aim of the reform is to make the training and assessment process more efficient for people working in licensed occupations by reducing the duplication which comes from additional training and assessment to meet licensing and regulatory requirements.
As part of the integration process it has been agreed that, where applicable, any skill related requirements for licensing be integrated into national training packages or accredited courses. Accordingly, new units of competency for high-risk work licensing are being developed for inclusion in a range of training packages.
The most recent development in occupational licensing reform was the 3 July 2008 agreement by Council of Australian Governments to develop a national trade licensing system.
The system will remove inconsistencies across state and territory borders and allow for a more mobile workforce. The system will see a national approach to the licensing of a range of economically important trades.
COAG has agreed that the national system will initially apply to a range of priority trades.
Find out more on the national licensing system.
This page was generated on 04 March, 2011