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Published: 21 December 2017   •   Media release

The Murray–Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) has welcomed the shared commitment of Basin ministers to develop a Basin Compliance Compact as a top priority, to give all Australians greater confidence that the rules and regulations governing water use in the Basin are being enforced and complied with.

Chief Executive of the MDBA, Phillip Glyde, said Basin ministers had tasked the MDBA and other Basin officials with developing the Basin Compliance Compact, which was recommended in the MDBA's recently released Basin-wide review of compliance.

"Basin communities must be able to have confidence that there are effective compliance and enforcement systems in place across the entire Basin—and that the contribution of those who do the right thing and follow the rules is not being undermined by others breaking the law," Mr Glyde said.

"Strengthening compliance frameworks and systems across the Basin will require cross-jurisdictional cooperation and shared commitment—and the MDBA welcomes the strong commitment from Basin ministers to work together to improve compliance.

"The Basin Compliance Compact will detail a compliance implementation framework, including specific plans for improving compliance and enforcement activities for each jurisdiction and for the MDBA, as well as transparent reporting and accountability arrangements on progress.

"The Basin Compliance Compact will be developed for consideration at the Ministerial Council's first meeting in 2018, and subsequently by the Council of Australian Governments.

"Given the number of reviews into different aspects of compliance currently underway or recently completed, a well-coordinated response and plan of action will be essential to give proper effect to the numerous recommendations resulting from the reviews.

"I was very pleased to see Basin ministers agree to appoint an independent person to examine and bring together the findings of the various compliance reviews, and provide advice on implementation.

"The MDBA remains committed to playing its part in strengthening compliance across the Basin.

"We released our Murray–Darling Basin Water Compliance Review last month, and we have already begun implementing the recommendations of this review, including increasing transparency and consistency in the way the MDBA handles allegations of non-compliance."

The MDBA will report regularly on progress in implementing the recommendations on its website at


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