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Trade processing times — standards and performance

Trade processing standards

Since the 2007-2008 water year, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) and the Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council have developed service and reporting standards for trade processing times by the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB) state approval authorities for both entitlement and water allocation trades. These standards do not apply to non Murray-Darling Basin jurisdictions although these states and territories will work towards meeting the agreed service standards.

The standards are set out in the table below.

State and territory Water allocation trade service standards (implemented from 1 July 2009)
Intrastate trade approval Interstate trade approval
*All interstate trades except for trades with South Australia, which would be consistent with standards set out above for South Australia
New South Wales, Victoria
Queensland, Australian Capital Territory
90% of allocation trades within 5 business days *90% of allocation trades within 10 business days
South Australia 90% of allocation trades within 10 business days 90% of allocation trades within 20 business days
State and territory Water entitlement trade service standards (implemented from 1 July 2009)
Intra and interstate trade approval Intra and interstate trade registration
Trade approval/rejection time

Total amount of time taken by the relevant water authorities to approve or reject a trade application received from the buyer or seller.

The time excludes the duration when the application is back with the buyer or seller due to incorrect/incomplete information and include the approval/rejection times for all water authorities involved in processing the trade.

Trade registration time

Total amount of time taken by the relevant water authorities to register a water entitlement trade in the water register after receiving the relevant transfer documents/registration application from the buyer or seller.

The time excludes the duration when the application is back with the buyer or seller due to incorrect/incomplete information and include the times for all water authorities involved in adjusting the water accounts and registering the trade.

New South Wales, Victoria,
South Australia (River Murray only),
Queensland, Australian Capital Territory
90% of entitlement trades within 20 business days 90% of entitlement trades within 10 business days

Trade processing performance

Performance against agreed trade processing service standards are monitored and reported in accordance with monitoring and reporting frameworks for allocation and entitlement trades by each of the MDB states and territory. Water trade processing performance details are available in the National Water Commission Australian water markets reports 

Trade processing performance reports for individual MDB state and territories are also available: