Hon Lianne Dalziel
Minister of Commerce, Minister for Food Safety,
Associate Minister of Justice, MP for Christchurch East
16 August 2008 Media Statement
Embargoed until 4pm Saturday 16 August
Govt wants feedback on regulation of franchising
Commerce Minister Lianne Dalziel today released a discussion document inviting those in the franchise sector to comment
on whether franchising in New Zealand needs its own regulatory framework or whether the current voluntary regime offers
"I was actively involved in meeting with franchisees at the beginning of the year who had been caught up in what is an
alleged fraud and still subject to investigation by the relevant authorities including the Franchise Association of New
Zealand (FANZ). I have initiated this review to see whether there are any issues in the franchising sector that make a
case for franchise-specific regulation (as they have in Australia, for example), particularly to give more protection to
franchisees," Lianne Dalziel said.
There is currently no specific legislation relating to franchising in New Zealand, although franchise agreements are
subject to a range of generic laws such as contract law and intellectual property law. There is also voluntary
self-regulation of the sector through the FANZ, which requires its members to adhere to a Code of Practice and a Code of
The discussion paper seeks feedback on regulatory options that might assist the industry. These include information
disclosure requirements, obligations to obtain professional advice, a cooling-off period, mandatory mediation processes,
minimum contractual terms, and obligations of ‘good faith’ bargaining.
Lianne Dalziel said that feedback from submissions will allow officials to provide her with a detailed assessment of the
current state of play and what options are worth pursuing.
"Any proposal would have to weigh up the costs and the benefits, because franchising is an important contributor to the
New Zealand economy. We therefore need to make sure that steps taken to improve the legal framework around franchising
also promote sector growth, development and innovation."
Lianne Dalziel will officially launch the review at the Business Opportunities and Franchise Expo in Auckland on
Saturday 16 August. Feedback is sought from all interested parties. Submissions close on 21 November 2008. The
discussion document can be viewed at: http://www.med.govt.nz/templates/MultipageDocumentTOC____37853.aspx