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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 […]

New Zealand: Bill Banning Foreigners from Purchasing Homes Passed

(Aug. 29, 2018) On August 15, 2018, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Overseas Investment Amendment Bill (the Bill), which includes provisions that will generally prohibit foreign residents from purchasing existing residential land in New Zealand by categorizing it as “sensitive land.” (Overseas Investment Amendment Bill, PARLIAMENT OF NEW ZEALAND (last visited Aug. 23, 2018); […]

Australia: Bills Containing New Espionage, Foreign Interference Offenses, and Establishing Foreign Agent Registry Enacted

(Aug. 21, 2018) On June 28, 2018, the Australian Parliament passed the National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Bill 2018 (Cth) (the Bill). (National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Bill 2018, Parliament of Australia website; National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Act 2018 (Cth), Federal Register of Legislation website.) The Bill […]