Independent Review of the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012

On 20 March 2024, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence, the Hon Richard Marles MP tabled the report of the Independent Review of the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 and the Government Response in the Australian Parliament. 

The review examined the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 alongside existing policies and regulations surrounding the protection of sensitive and critical technology. The review also considered whether current safeguards for technology transfers complement these frameworks.

As part of the review, the co-leads held extensive stakeholder consultations. The review received 61 written submissions and engaged in 6 round tables across Australia with representatives from government, industry, universities and peak bodies.


The review made 10 recommendations aimed at improving Australia’s export control regime, including streamlining processes and improving outreach and education about the framework. 

The Australian Government:

  • agreed to 7 recommendations and agreed-in-principle with the remaining 3 recommendations
  • will continue to work closely with relevant stakeholders, including industry and academia, to implement the review’s recommendations 
  • will implement the key recommendations alongside the forthcoming reforms to the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012.


The Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 regulates the supply, publication and brokering of military and dual-use goods, software and technology as specified in the Defence and Strategic Goods List.

The Act requires a review every 5 years to ensure Australia’s export control regime remains fit-for-purpose, balancing appropriate safeguards with a rapidly evolving strategic environment.

In August 2023, the Australian Government appointed Mr Peter Tesch and Professor Graeme Samuel AC to co-lead the 2023 review.


Independent Review of the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 (PDF, 1008.74 KB) Government Response (PDF, 138.36 KB) List of submissions (PDF, 11.33 MB)