JCPAA Inquiry into GBEs

Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit Inquiry

The Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit (JCPAA) held an inquiry into the corporate governance and accountability arrangements for Australian Government GBEs (Government Business Enterprises).

The JCPAA's inquiry findings were tabled in Parliament on 16 February 2000. Offering a detailed examination and evaluation of the existing GBE governance framework, the Committee's report on GBE governance arrangements includes a number of key recommendations.

For further information on the committee see: Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit [External Site]

Corporate Governance and Accountability Arrangements for Commonwealth Government Business Enterprises

Recommendation 1

That the Minister for Finance and Administration review the applicability of administrative law to current and future GBEs on a case by case basis.

Recommendation 2

That all portfolio Ministers be removed from their government business enterprise shareholder responsibilities, but remain as the responsible Minister under GBEs' enabling legislation. The Government's shareholder interests in GBEs should be represented by, and be the responsibility of, the Minister for Finance and Administration.

Recommendation 3

That the Minister for Finance and Administration amend the 1997 Governance Arrangements for Commonwealth Government Business Enterprises to include a section that all Ministerial directions to GBE boards should be in writing and tabled in both Houses of Parliament within 15 sitting days.

Recommendation 4

That the Minister for Finance and Administration amend Part 3 of the 1997 Governance Arrangements for Commonwealth GBEs to include a requirement that GBE boards ensure that there are appropriate and effective induction, education and training programs offered to new and existing board directors.

Recommendation 5

That the Minister for Finance and Administration amend Part 3 of the 1997 Governance Arrangements for Commonwealth GBEs to include a section requiring confidential board and director performance appraisal. All GBEs will be expected to comply with the new arrangements.

Recommendation 6

That the Minister for Finance and Administration develop draft guidelines for the scrutiny by Parliamentary Committees of commercially confidential issues relating to GBEs. The draft guidelines should be submitted to the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit for approval.

Recommendation 7

That the Minister for Finance and Administration amend Part 4, Managing Risks, of the 1997 Governance Arrangements for Commonwealth GBEs to include requirements setting out the risk management responsibilities of audit committees.

View the recommendations of the Committee [External Site]

View the Government's response to the administrative recommendations (1,4,5,7) [External Site]

View the Government's response to the policy recommendations (2,3,6) [PDF Document 12KB]

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Contact for information on this page: GBE contact