Australia to Ban the Import of Engineered Stone

Australia has taken a significant step by becoming the first country in announcing a prohibition on engineered stone, prompted by a notable increase in instances of workers developing silicosis, a lung disease. During a highly anticipated meeting, workplace ministers from the Commonwealth, states, and territories collectively decided to enforce a nationwide ban on this product.

Commencing on July 1, 2024, the ban will be effective in most states and territories. Additionally, the federal government is set to impose restrictions on the importation of engineered stone, although the specific date for this action is yet to be finalized.

The consensus among workplace relations and work health and safety ministers to disallow the supply and production of engineered stone reflects a coordinated effort. The majority of jurisdictions are expected to put the prohibition into effect from July 1 of the coming year. Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Tony Burke, leading the relevant ministers, issued a statement indicating that further deliberations would take place before their next meeting in March. During this subsequent meeting, the aim is to reach an agreement on a transition period concerning contracts entered into on or before the recent agreement made on Wednesday.

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