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Political Donation Transparency (AU0017)



Action Plan: Australia Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active


Lead Institution: Department of Finance (with the Australian Electoral Commission)

Support Institution(s): Australian Electoral Commission Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, interested CSO stakeholders

Policy Areas

Legislation & Regulation, Legislative, Political Integrity

IRM Review

IRM Report: Pending IRM Review

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Pending IRM Review

Relevant to OGP Values: Pending IRM Review

Potential Impact: Pending IRM Review

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review


Enhance the transparency of political donations and funding
Commitment Start and End Date
September 2078-August 2020
Lead implementing agency/actor
Department of Finance (with the Australian Electoral Commission)
Commitment description
What is the public problem that the commitment will address?
The Commonwealth funding and disclosure scheme. established under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 7978 (the Electoral Act) specifies arrangements for the public funding of federal election campaigns. and the disclosure of funding source. The objective of the scheme is to provide transparency and inform the public about the financial dealings of political parties and candidates. and others involved in the electoral process.
The scheme requires relevant organisations and individuals to lodge an annual return with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC). Annual returns are published in PDF format on the AEC website at the beginning of February for the previous financial year.
Different arrangements apply to elections. Election disclosure returns are published by the AEC on its website 24 weeks after polling day.
The delay between transactions being entered into. and their disclosure. while consistent with the requirements of Part XX of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 7978. detracts from transparency and affects the ability of the public to form judgements about political parties. candidates and other actors that seek to influence election outcomes. and to apply that knowledge in exercising their franchise. This is particularly the case in an election context where the voting public is not informed of donations or electoral expenditure prior to casting their votes.
What is the commitment? Australia will investigate options for enhancing the timeliness and the accessibility of relevant information. through enhancing the electoral funding and disclosure scheme.

How will the
contribute to solve the
public problem?

Ourambition is to ensure the Commonwealth's electoral funding
and disclosure scheme provides for the improved timeliness and
accessibility of relevant information. with regards to the financial
dealings of political parties and candidates. and others in the
electoral process. This will support increased transparency and
increase public confidence in Australian democracy.

Why is this commitment relevant to OGP values?
This commitment will advance the OGP values of transparency and civic participation by giving due consideration to the public: improving the accessibility of information provided to the public; and providing the public with more frequent and timely information
Additional information
JSCEM Inquiry

Milestone Activity with a Verifiable Deliverable
JSCEM Inquiry and reporting
Inquiry into 2016 election including relevant terms of reference – 12/31/2018
Government considers recommendations
1/1/2019 – 9/30/2019
Parliament and other relevant stakeholders consider Government decisions
1/1/2020 – 9/30/2020
Contact Information
Resource Management Branch, Department of Finance
Other actors involved
Australian Electoral Commission
Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, interested CSO stakeholders


  1. Strengthen Anti-Corruption Framework

    AU0016, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  2. Political Donation Transparency

    AU0017, 2018, Legislation & Regulation

  3. Data Sharing

    AU0018, 2018, Access to Information

  4. Improve Public Service Practice

    AU0019, 2018, Capacity Building

  5. Access to Information

    AU0020, 2018, Access to Information

  6. Enhance Public Engagement Skills in the Public Service

    AU0021, 2018, Capacity Building

  7. Independent Review of the Australian Public Service

    AU0022, 2018, Capacity Building

  8. Expand Open Contracting

    AU0023, 2018, Access to Information

  9. Whiste-Blower Protections

    AU0001, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  10. Beneficial Ownership Transparency

    AU0002, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  11. Extractive Industries Transparency

    AU0003, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  12. Combating Corporate Crime

    AU0004, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  13. Data Innovation

    AU0005, 2016, Access to Information

  14. Public Trust in Data Sharing

    AU0006, 2016, Access to Information

  15. Digitization of Government Services

    AU0007, 2016, Capacity Building

  16. Information Management and Access Laws

    AU0008, 2016, Access to Information

  17. Freedom of Information

    AU0009, 2016, Access to Information

  18. Access to Government Data

    AU0010, 2016, Access to Information

  19. Electoral System and Political Parties

    AU0011, 2016, Political Integrity

  20. National Integrity Framework

    AU0012, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  21. Open Contracting

    AU0013, 2016, Access to Information

  22. OGP NAP

    AU0014, 2016, Public Participation

  23. Public Participation

    AU0015, 2016, Capacity Building

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