The not-for-profit sector is large, diverse and makes immensely important contributions to the community. Charities have annual revenue of $143 billion, or over 8 per cent of Australia's GDP. They employ more than 1.3 million people and engage 3 million Australians in volunteering their time and effort to helping others. This could increase to 6 million volunteers when the broader not for-profit sector is considered. A recent assessment identified approximately 257,000 non-profit organisations operating in Australia. Australia's 55,000 registered charities are regulated by the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission (ACNC) under the current not-for-profit regulatory framework. This framework does not extend to other not-for-profits. Australia is well served by its charities and not-for-profit sector and with close to five years of proportionate government oversight and regulation through the ACNC, the overwhelming majority of Australian charities are considered to be well-governed, operating with sound financial management, and are worthy of the trust and confidence of the Australian community. The Government is committed to making Australia's not-for-profit sector stronger and recognises the crucial role the ACNC plays in ensuring the sector continues to thrive.
The review into the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) legislation will enable the Government to meet its statutory obligation that a review of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Act 2012 and the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (Consequential and Transitional) Act 2012 be undertaken after their first five years of operation. A report on the review's findings and recommendations is required to be made to the Government by 3 June 2018. This report will be laid before each House of the Parliament within 15 sitting days of its receipt.