Senator Stephen Conroy has announced plans to extend the Do Not Call Register renewal period to five years, but will exempt business to business calls, in a win for small business.
Senator Conroy announced plans on Friday the Do Not Call Register Amendment Bill 2009 to extend the period individual households can register with the Do Not Call Register from three to five years. But after extensive lobbying from the Council of Small Business of Australia will continue the exemption of business to business communications.
“Current legislation requires that phone numbers be re-registered every three years,” Conroy said. “That means from the end of May, the phone numbers of those who registered in May 2007 will start to become available to telemarketers, unless they are reregistered.”
“To facilitate the quick passage of these amendments, the Government will not proceed with the proposal to extend the Register to include business numbers in the current legislation,” it said in a statement.
“Stakeholders, including the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia, raised concerns that the inclusion of business numbers would impede legitimate business communications.”
Council of Small Business of Australia CEO Jaye Radisich applauded Senator Conroy’s plans.
“It is a rare occasion that a Government Minister has the strength and courage to reconsider his own legislative amendments in response to concerns from the small business community,” said Jaye Radisich.
“In his thorough examination of the future of the Do Not Call Register Senator Conroy has accepted that including business to business calls in the Register may not be beneficial for small businesses.”
“Given that 95% of Australian businesses are small, it makes sense that they should be allowed to freely interact with each other, and with big business, to promote their goods and services without being hindered by excessive regulation.”