Wednesday, September 18th, 2013 - National Electrical and Communications Association
The National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA) is very pleased to back the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) in taking such a tough stance on the highly-contentious issue of national licensing.

“We believe that National Licensing can only work in any industry if it either raises the bar in terms of safety and quality, or at the very least maintains best practice,” says James Tinslay, NECA CEO.

“For the electrical industry there is agreement across the board that the current proposals fail the community in every way,” adds Tinslay.  “There would be a lowering in the basic standards.  And electrical contractors would be forced into a lowest-common-denominator model which allows a much broader range of tradesmen to work with electricity.  This is not good for the safety of the public, nor is it good for the protection of anyone working in, or around, our industry.”

“The decision as to whether to adopt the proposals for National Licensing is now back with the States and Territories.  We therefore urge all industries to lobby their State Governments to reject the proposals as this is clearly a backward step,” advises Tinslay.

NECA has been actively lobbying for a National Licensing system for both electricians and electrical contractor licences to replace the current long-standing State-based systems for nearly a decade.  It is possible to drive anywhere in Australia with a State-based driver’s licence and there is a single national cabling licensing system.  So a National Electrical Licensing system is well overdue.

“With a new government in place, this is the time for industry to regroup and be heard on this issue,” suggests Tinslay.  “The recent debacle with the pink batts/insulation program – where four young people died unnecessarily, simply because the Government of the day did not heed the advice it received from industry prior to launching the initiative, must not be repeated.  Understanding how to manage projects involving electricity is a highly skilled profession and any attempt to undermine that skill is putting people’s lives at risk.  We urge Mr Abbott’s new Government to give this matter urgent attention as time is running out. This unacceptable set of recommendations could be approved before Christmas if they are not challenged, and rejected, now,” Tinslay concluded.

If the concerns affecting safety are not addressed, NECA will call on State Governments to demand that the National Licensing initiative be abandoned.


NECA is the peak industry body representing the interests of electrical and communications contractors Australia-wide.  For further information go to

Contact Profile

Barry Jackson – Marketing and Communication

P: 02 9962 6904
M: 0457 767 328


National Electrical and Communications Association/ Real Estate Institue of Australia/ NECA/ REIA/ National Licensing/ James Tinslay/ Barry Jackson



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