History of the Productivity Commission

The Productivity Commission was established in April 1998 under the Productivity Commission Act 1998.

The three bodies which joined to form the new Commission - the Industry Commission, Bureau of Industry Economics and Economic Planning Advisory Commission - were amalgamated on an administrative basis in 1996.

The Productivity Commission Act replaces the Industry Commission Act 1989 and the Economic Planning Advisory Commission Act 1983.

The Productivity Commission combines many of the essential features of the three merging bodies but its role and functions have been extended and made more explicit. The policy guidelines covering all its work have been made more comprehensive, and greater flexibility provided in its operating procedures.

The Commission is headed by a Chairperson and between 4 and 11 other Commissioners, who are appointed by the Governor-General for periods up to five years. Associate Commissioners can be appointed by the Treasurer on a full or part-time basis. Commission staff are Commonwealth public servants.

The publication - From Industry Assistance to Productivity: 30 Years of 'The Commission' - reviews the organisation's activities over the last three decades.