Sunsetting of aviation legislation

Sunsetting of aviation legislation

The Australian Government is reviewing a number of legislative instruments due to sunset on or before 1 April 2026.

Sunsetting is the automatic repeal of a legislative instrument after a fixed period, usually 10 years. A sunsetting review ensures that a legislative instrument is kept up to date and will only remain in force for as long as it is needed.

Sunsetting reviews recently completed

The Airports Regulations 2024 and Airports (Ownership) Regulations 2024 commence on 1 April 2024. These replace the Airports Regulations 1997 and the Airports (Ownership—Interests in Shares) Regulations 1996.

The review included public consultation on policy matters in early 2022 and an exposure draft of the regulations in mid-2023.

The regulations have been updated to better align with the Act, and reflect modern drafting practice, while generally maintaining the intent and effect of the regulations they replace. For example, spent and redundant provisions have not been replaced. Other changes include:

  • Requirements about the ownership and control of airport-operator companies have been consolidated in a single set of regulations.
  • Reporting requirements about the ownership and control of airport-operator companies have changed.
    • The department will be able to make requests for information instead of relying on fixed annual reporting requirements, with flexibility to tailor requests for information based on an analysis of risk (including requesting information less often).
  • Subleasing and licencing requirements have been simplified.
    • The requirement for airport-operator companies and their tenants to seek approval from the department of subleases or licences before entering into these commercial arrangements has been removed.

The explanatory statements to the regulations explain the changes in more detail.

Sunsetting reviews underway

The Government is reviewing instruments due to sunset on 1 April 2025, including the:

A review of the Airports (Control of On-Airport Activities) Regulations 1997 is also underway, and the first round of consultation on these regulations was completed in October 2022.

For more information on the sunsetting of these or other instruments, please contact: