Building resilience in Australian homes has been a long discussed topic in the insurance world.
With the recent catastrophic flooding in Queensland and New South Wales earlier this year (February and March 2022), the conversation has only grown even stronger.
The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has welcomed the Queensland government’s independent review of the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) to ensure homes in the state remain resilient to extreme weather.
The independent review, ‘QBCC Governance Review 2022’, discusses developers’ role in the Queensland building and construction industry, and it aims to establish a steering committee to monitor and report on the progress of QBCC’s recommendations.
The recommendations in the review have matched the ones made by the ICA in ‘Building a more resilient Australia’, a report outlining the need to improve protections for Australians from extreme weather risks.
ICA CEO Andrew Hall has long been outspoken on the issue, and the need for more action from the Government.
“As the regulator of the third-largest contributor to the Queensland economy, the Queensland Building and Construction Commission has an integral role to play in improving the resilience of Queensland homes to worsening extreme weather,” said Mr Hall.
“The ICA and insurers are pleased with the recommendations of the independent review as it drives home the urgent need to improve resilience for homes, which will directly impact on premiums for at-risk communities.”
The Queensland government made a statement saying it supports and is committed to addressing the independent reviewer’s findings to deliver reforms that reflect outcomes sought by recommendations and review.
It also recognised that many of the specific actions needed are complex and will need further detailed analysis before deciding how to deliver on the recommendations’ intention.
“The Queensland government is prioritising actions that strengthen the conflicts of interest framework, improve transparency, impartiality, fairness, and consistency in the QBCC’s decision-making processes,” it said.
“Other priorities include separating the functions of the mediation, resolution, and review unit from the QBCC licensing and compliance functions, as well as ongoing staff training to deliver a regulator with a clear focus on outcomes and customer service.”