Report calls for national uniform laws for franchises

EVERY franchise in Australia could soon have the same set of rules, with Small Business Minister Gary Gray announcing reforms could be in place before Christmas.

At a small business summit in Brisbane, Mr Gray said the Federal Government was acting on a major independent review into the franchising code conducted earlier this year.

The final report calls for consistency across the country.

Franchises employ more than 400,000 people, Mr Gray said, and pump millions into the economy.

The government will now work with the industry before creating the legislation, with even the Opposition to be privy to its progress.

"I think it is fair and reasonable that my Shadow Minister Bruce Billson be given full and open access to all materials relating to this," He said.

Mr Gray said his counterpart would be comprehensively briefed on the process to encourage support for the reform from all sides.

"Whoever wins the election, these reforms should be completed," Mr Gray said.

The changes to the code would introduce an obligation for all sides to act in good faith, and include new cash penalties for those who breach it.

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