Minister Penny Wong's announcement yesterday that the
Commonwealth Government will invest $56 million in a national water
market system demonstrates the Federal and State Governments'
commitment to making water markets work more effectively across
The new National Water Market System will involve the creation
of a national portal and a new Common Registry System for
implementation in NSW, South Australia, Western Australia and
Tasmania, the Northern Territory and ACT. The existing water
registry systems in Victoria and Queensland will also be enhanced
as part of this initiative.
The national portal will be operate in real time, providing
water users with up to date water market information to enable
users to make faster and more efficient transactions. The new
national market information service will contain information about
water licences and seasonal allocations. How the portal will be
developed and maintained is not yet publicly available.
Accessibility, reliability and accuracy will be crucial to ensuring
The details of the Common Registry System have not yet been
released but it is clear that water registers and functions will
continue to be the responsibility of the States and Territories.
The development of the Common Registry System is in line with the
proposal put forward by the National Water Commission of moving
beyond state registers to a common national registry system to
enhance the compatibility across jurisdictions.
The National Water Market System has been endorsed by the States
and Territories which provides the jurisdictional support required
to implement a national water system.
The completion date for the national portal, the first step in
the National Water Market System, is set for April 2010 giving the
Governments a six month opportunity to create a much needed
platform for fostering broader and deeper water trading across the
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