Statement of expectations 2023-24

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Ms Nicole Rich
Executive Director, Regulatory Services &
Director, Consumer Affairs Victoria
Level 17, 121 Exhibition Street

Dear Ms Rich

Statement of Expectations for Consumer Affairs Victoria

I am pleased to provide you with my expectations for Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) to guide your business planning processes for the 2023/24 financial year.

Legislative framework

As Minister for Consumer Affairs, I am responsible for administering the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 and related consumer protection legislation shaping Victoria’s policy and regulatory settings to promote fair economic activity, support businesses, and ensure adequate protections for consumers and renters.

Emerging risks and priorities

Based on consultation with CAV about the government’s priorities and emerging risks, my expectations for CAV are set out below.

As Victoria’s consumer regulator supporting a fair, safe and competitive marketplace, I expect CAV to discharge its legislative and regulatory duties as set out in the legislation it administers. As part of this activity, my expectation is that CAV focuses on:

  • protecting Victorians from the impacts of rising cost of living pressures by providing a timely response (including accurate communications and effective investigation and enforcement activities) to the most significant risks of harm caused by non-compliant trader and rental provider conduct, in particular:
    • domestic building industry challenges leading to unfinished or defective homes or loss of monies paid upfront
    • rental providers failing to provide safe and secure accommodation that meets minimum standards, and
    • motor car traders that sell poor quality cars and fail to provide a remedy for defects.
  • supporting all Victorians, especially those experiencing vulnerability, through inclusive and accessible services – in particular through working within the Department of Government Services and partnering with Service Victoria to make it easier and quicker for Victorians to find, access and use important consumer protection information and advice
  • working within the Department of Government Services and partnering with Service Victoria to harness digital technologies to improve CAV services and make the most of CAV data and resources for the community, including delivery of a new online residential tenancies bond system
  • engaging with partners, stakeholders, and industry to better understand and serve Victorian communities, in particular:
    • holding regular forums and engagement opportunities to understand emerging issues and obtain input into how CAV undertakes its functions, and
    • collaborating closely with other regulators where relevant to address risks of harm to the community, and
  • improving Victorians’ trust in CAV as a regulator by raising awareness of CAV’s role and
    functions and increasing promotion of CAV’s compliance and enforcement activities.

I expect CAV to incorporate these expectations into business plans including milestones for when CAV will meet these expectations, and to report on progress against these expectations in CAV’s Annual Report. Business plans should also include appropriate milestones to review the content of this letter and to advise me when it needs to be updated or renewed.

I further expect that CAV, in conjunction with the Department of Government Services, undertake a review of the expectations outlined in this letter as part of annual reporting obligations, and to advise me of any recommended updates.

I look forward to seeing CAV continue to work towards achieving best practice in the administration and enforcement of consumer regulation for the benefit of the Victorian community.

Yours sincerely,

The Hon. Danny Pearson MP
Minister for Consumer Affairs