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Australia: Queensland Enacts Historic Human Rights Legislation

(Mar. 6, 2019) On February 27, 2019, the Queensland Parliament passed the Human Rights Bill 2018 (Qld), making it the third jurisdiction in Australia to enshrine human rights protections in such legislation. (Human Rights Bill 2018 (Qld), Queensland Parliament website; Jack Maxwell, A Human Rights Act for Queensland, OXFORD HUMAN RIGHTS HUB (Nov. 26, 2018).) […]

Australia: Court Includes Climate Impact in Grounds for Upholding Rejection of New Coal Mine

(Feb. 27, 2019) On February 8, 2019, the New South Wales (NSW) Land and Environment Court issued a ruling in which it dismissed an appeal from a mining company against a NSW government decision refusing to grant the company approval to establish a new open-cut coal mine. (Gloucester Resources Limited v Minister for Planning [2019] […]

Malaysia: Ban on Smoking in All Eateries Comes into Effect

(Jan. 17, 2019) On January 1, 2019, a ban on smoking at all restaurants and other eateries, including open-air hawker stalls, came into effect in Malaysia. (Ban on Smoking in Malaysian Eateries Takes Effect, STRAITS TIMES (Jan. 2, 2019).) According to the Control of Tobacco Products (Amendment) Regulations 2018, which were issued in December 2018, […]

New Zealand: Medicinal Cannabis Bill Passed

(Dec. 18, 2018) On December 11, 2018, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Misuse of Drugs (Medicinal Cannabis) Amendment Bill (New Zealand Legislation website), which “will introduce an exception and a statutory defence for terminally ill people to possess and use illicit cannabis and to possess a cannabis utensil; provide a regulation-making power to enable the […]

Australia: Bill Enabling Law Enforcement and Intelligence Agencies to Access Encrypted Information Passes

(Dec. 14, 2018) On December 6, 2018, the Australian Parliament passed the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Bill 2018 (Cth) (as enacted; all legislation links are to Federal Register of Legislation website.) The Bill amends the Telecommunications Act 1997 (Cth) to “establish “frameworks for voluntary and mandatory industry assistance to law enforcement and […]

New Zealand: Mandatory Phase Out of Single-Use Plastic Bags to Commence Mid-2019

(Dec. 3, 2018) On November 24, 2018, Associate Minister for the Environment, Eugenie Sage, announced that the New Zealand government had decided that a mandatory phaseout of single-use plastic shopping bags will come into effect in the middle of 2019. (Press Release, Eugenie Sage, Mandatory Phase Out of Single-Use Plastic Bags Confirmed (Nov. 24, 2018).) […]

Australia: Legislation to Implement Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Enacted; Agreement Ratified

(Nov. 15, 2018) On October 17 and 18, 2018, the Australian Parliament passed three bills that were required to implement and begin the ratification of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CP-TPP or TPP-11). (Press Release, Scott Morrison & Simon Birmingham, TPP-11 to Open New Doors for Aussie Farmers and Businesses (Oct. 17, 2018), […]

New Zealand: Education Bill Removes National Standards and Charter School Model from Law

(Oct. 25, 2018) On October 18, 2018, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Education Amendment Bill 2018, which makes substantial amendments to the Education Act 1989 and the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017. (Education Amendment Act 2018, New Zealand Legislation website; Education Amendment Bill 2018, MINISTRY OF EDUCATION (last updated Oct. 19, 2018).) The Bill received royal […]

New Zealand: Decision on Scope of Crown/Maori Relations Portfolio and Establishment of New Office

(Sept. 25, 2018) On September 18, 2018, the New Zealand government announced that the Cabinet had agreed to the final scope of the Crown/Maori Relations ministerial portfolio and to establish a new agency called the Office for Maori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti. (Press Release, Kelvin Davis, Maori Crown Agency to Be Established (Sept. 18, 2018), New Zealand […]