Regulation Impact Statement Updates

Official website for publishing regulatory impact analysis information for regulatory decisions announced by the Australian Government, COAG and COAG Councils.

Treaty between Australia and the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste Establishing their Maritime Boundaries in the Timor Sea

Aust Gov
29th November 2018

Regulation Impact Statement - Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

On 28 November 2018, the Government introduced the Timor Sea Maritime Boundaries Treaty Consequential Amendments Bill 2018 and the Passenger Movement Charge Amendment (Timor Sea Maritime Boundaries Treaty) Bill 2018 as the first step towards that implementation of the Treaty between Australia and the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste Establishing their Maritime Boundaries.

Finalising the implementation of a Treaty between Australia and the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste will:

  • define Australia’s permanent maritime boundaries with Timor-Leste;
  • address the legal status of the Greater Sunrise gas fields and provide and pathway for joint development, exploitation, management and revenue sharing of this resource through establishing the Greater Sunrise Special Regime;
  • expand Timor-Leste’s exclusive maritime jurisdiction, with some oil and gas fields transferring to Timor-Leste’s maritime jurisdiction exclusively, and
  • establish transitional arrangements to ensure certainty and security for affected offshore petroleum operations in the Timor Sea.

A Treaty implements the outcome of the compulsory conciliation proceedings commenced by Timor-Leste on 11 April 2016 under Article 298 and Annex V of the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade prepared and certified a Regulation Impact Statement (RIS), which the Office of Best Practice Regulation (OBPR) assessed as compliant with the Australian Government RIS requirements and consistent with best practice.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was unable to estimate average annual regulatory costs on affected businesses at this stage of the process due to ongoing negotiations around arrangements to transition to Timorese jurisdiction, which involves commercial-in-confidence information. The RIS took the approach of demonstrating the net benefits of the Treaty option in terms of greater stability in the region and greater certainty for businesses operating in the Timor Sea. The OBPR agreed with this approach.

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