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Extraordinary Ministerial Construction Council Meeting

​2 July 2019, Brisbane


 The Ministerial Construction Council met in Brisbane on 2 July 2019 to continue discussions on the challenge of professional indemnity insurance for building industry professionals.

The Minister welcomed to the meeting representatives from the Insurance Council of Australia, the Australian Institute of Building Surveyors, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Bovill Risk and Insurance Consultants and the Strata Community Association (Qld).

The Minister also welcomed PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

The Council noted the agreed principles from the 18 June 2019 meeting to address the current issues facing professional indemnity insurance for building certifiers. These principles focused on reducing risk, protecting the interest of consumers, industry and taxpayers and ensuring the safety of building occupiers.

The issues around the certification sector are long-standing and nationwide and are also influenced by global factors.

The Council noted the release of the PwC interim report as a valuable tool in establishing the true state of the Australian PI market and supports developing a shared understanding of the reasons behind the retraction of the market.

The Council noted the need to consider analysis and actions in the framework of:

  • options to address the past actions of the building and construction industry
  • options to ensure the current building and construction activity can continue
  • options to continue strengthening key functions to underpin the industry’s future

The Council noted the core areas that need addressed including:

  • strengthening PI insurance
  • the non-compliant use of ACPs
  • improving the system-wide issues

Queensland has been working to strengthen the building industry by addressing the issues identified, both in this state and nationally.

The Council noted the Queensland Government actions already implemented to improve and strengthen the certification industry. These include a commitment to reform in the Queensland Building Plan; the Non-conforming Building Product legislation; the Building Confidence Report implementation plan; and the work of the Non-conforming Building Products Audit Taskforce and the combustible cladding checklist; taskforce facilitated continuing professional development courses; and the development of a Materials Library.

The Council discussed options focused on:

  • enabling certifiers to continue operating
  • strengthening the cladding response
  • calling for and supporting improvements in professional standards
  • options which benefited from a nationally consistent approach.

The Council noted the intention of the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) to remind certifiers of their obligation to disclose to insurers their history in relation to past, or possible future claims concerning combustible cladding.

The MCC agreed to the following overall approach:

  1. the ban on Aluminium Composite Panels (ACPs) with a polyethylene core greater than 30% on new buildings and its installation on existing buildings.
  2. the Queensland Government will proceed to make a regulation to conditionally allow Queensland licensed certifiers to hold professional indemnity insurance with cladding related exclusions for a time-limited period.
  3. the Queensland Government call upon the Australian Government to ban the importation of combustible cladding with a PE core.
  4. the Queensland Government call upon the Australian Government to work towards a nationally agreed approach to remediation for affected buildings.
  5. Building certifiers are advised to notify PI insurers of claims made against them of circumstances which may give rise to future claim

The Council agreed on the overall approach and agreed MCC members will provide advice in response to the detail of the regulation from their organisation by 5 July 2019.

The Minister thanked members for their ongoing commitment to the Council and their contribution to delivering Queensland Building Plan reforms for a safer, fairer, more sustainable building and construction industry in Queensland.​​​​​​

Last updated 04 July 2019    Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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