Advocacy: MBIE Updates

MENU 17 December Building System Performance project update | 7 November PrefabNZ Member and Partner support delivers change | 18 October Priority work update | 11 Oct Building law reform | 24 July CertMark withdraws from NZ Codemark | 11 July Building standards download | 1 July Key projects and initiatives | 17 June Building Legislative Reform submission | 2 May Building triangle explained | 3 April 2019 BSP GM Update | 13 Mar 2019 BAP Meeting | 7 December 2018 updates | 10 April 2017 announce new members |

DATE 17 December 2019

Building System Performance project update

Anna Butler, General Manager, Building Systems Performance Branch, Building, Resources & Markets, MBIE shares an updated on the Building Systems Performance project. Read the letter from Anna Butler here, review the timeline here and an overview of the building law reforms here.

DATE 7 November 2019

Member and Partner support delivers change

The recent Government announcement regarding the proposed changes to the Building Act highlights the important work of PrefabNZ, which can only be done with the support of members and partners. The proposed changes echoes most of the suggestions outlined in PrefabNZ’s submission and this highlights the role of PrefabNZ in advocating for change in the industry. Read more here .

DATE 18 October 2019

Update on priority work for Building System Performance

Last Friday, the Minister for Building and Construction announced the first phase of building law changes. These were proposals that received strong support during consultation, allowing us to move quickly. The changes will speed up consenting, reduce costs for home owners, and improve build quality. Importantly, it will save New Zealanders up to $150 million over the next decade from fewer delays and repairs to substandard work. Read more here, and Building Performance Project overview here.

DATE 11 October 2019

Building law reform

Today the Minister for Building and Construction announced the Government’s first decisions on the proposed building reforms. If passed into law, the reforms will speed up consenting, lift the quality of building work and provide fairer outcomes if things go wrong.

Today’s announcement is the result of a huge amount of collaborative work over the last 18 months. Thank you to all the individuals and organisations that have helped identify the issues facing the sector and develop practical proposals to address them.

DATE 24 July 2019

CertMark International withdraws from NZ CodeMark scheme

CertMark International Pty Ltd (CMI) has withdrawn from the New Zealand CodeMark scheme effective from midnight 22 July 2019. This follows its recent suspension as a product certification body (PCB) by the Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand (JAS-ANZ).

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) is contacting all CMI product certificate holders and other PCBs to notify them of the withdrawal and the next steps that need to be taken.

All current CodeMark product certificates issued by CMI remain valid, and can continue to be relied on by Building Consent Authorities (BCAs) as long as they remain on the MBIE CodeMark New Zealand product certificate register. MBIE recommends BCAs check the register before issuing any new building consents involving certificates issued by CMI.

To see a current list of accredited PCBs, visit Applying for CodeMark.

To confirm the status of a product certificate, please check MBIE’s Product certificate register.

Any questions regarding the withdrawal of CMI can be sent to

DATE 11 July 2019

Building Standards available for download

To remove barriers to achieving compliance in the building system, over 120 building standards are now available for free download.

These have been funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) to make it easier to comply with the Building Code.

Standards New Zealand, and MBIE as the building system regulator, are committed to improving access to building standards that make a difference to the wellbeing of New Zealanders.

The selected standards are ones that directly help demonstrate compliance with the Building Code, resulting in safe and well-constructed buildings and homes.

MBIE has acted on the concerns of building practitioners that the cost of standards can be a barrier to applying best practice. In December 2017, we made five prominent building standards and a handbook available free of charge, which attracted over 15,000 downloads in the last 18 months.

New Zealand is now one of the few countries in the world providing free access to building standards. Download here

DATE 1 July 2019

MBIE Building Performance project update

Download Key Building System Performance projects and initiatives

Below a letter from Anna Butler GM, Building System Performance

"Since my last Building System Performance (BSP) update, progress has been strong. We’ve cemented support for sector transformation with two big initiatives that complement the Skills Action Plan work already underway. In April the Construction Sector Accord was launched, and in June consultation on the proposed building law reforms closed.

Through the Accord, agreement for government and industry partnership, as well as principles, goals and priority work has been set. Now the focus is on developing a plan of action for the industry. This work is being led by the Accord Strategy Group of industry leaders and government Chief Executives, with the aim to engage widely later this year.

Thank you to everyone who took time to make a submission on the proposed building law reforms. I have read some of the almost 500 submissions, looking at how your feedback applies across the wider building system. It’s the system view I’m most interested in, and the building law changes that will work together to deliver the lift in sector performance that’s needed.

There’s a big team effort within BSP at the moment. We’re working hard to absorb consultation feedback and use it to inform our advice to the Minister for Building and Construction. We’ll tell you soon what we heard.

Still ahead of us is a vast amount of work to develop the detailed legislative design. There will be opportunities to engage with us through this process, and again through the select committee process next year. Legislative changes are likely to be rolled out over the next two to five years.

In other work, last month Parliament passed the Building Amendment Act. It provides MBIE with legislative power to investigate building failures, a role that has been difficult to perform in the past. It also means the system for managing buildings after an emergency event is improved, including clarifying roles and responsibilities.

Also last month, the Building Code was updated. This was the second update since we initiated bi-annual changes in June and November each year. Most significantly, there is now one Fire Acceptable Solution C/AS2 rather than six separate documents, a way to test claddings on tall buildings, and a requirement for ventilation in certain areas of housing.

Currently open for feedback until 6 August 2019 is consultation on proposed dam safety regulations. Have a look and consider having your say –

You can learn more about our work and who the responsible managers are in the attached project overview. Finally, we have a new Policy Director, Laura O’Sullivan. She’s overseeing the Occupational Regulation part of the building law reform work and leading development of a forecasting model for the sector workforce needs.

As always, your support and input is appreciated. If you need any further information please get in touch."

DATE 17 June 2019

FINAL PrefabNZ submission: MBIE Building Legislative Reform Consultation

PrefabNZ notes that MBIE has successfully picked up on a number of building consent related points that have been advocated for over the past 18 months, eg.

  • Building product versus building work / method
  • Single consent for single (transportable) building
  • Clarity around ‘reasonable grounds’
  • In-factory self-inspections
  • A more flexible Multiproof
  • A quality-focused approach for consenting offshore manufacture

The prefabrication sector is committed to work with MBIE on co-designing the proposed Manufacturer Certification Scheme and ways to implement successfully. Read the submission here

DATE 2 May 2019

Building Triangle download here and the web-link to explain the Building Code here

DATE 23 April 2019

PrefabNZ Member Morning Meetup for building legislation reform in Auckland and Wellington.

  • PrefabNZ will respond to section 2 on Building products and methods - with focus on questions 2.23 to 2.26 on offsite construction and a proposed new manufacturer certification scheme.

DATE 3 April 2019

BSP General Manager Update

Last issue I discussed an upcoming consultation on a number of proposed changes to address issues in the building regulatory system.

Very soon we’ll be asking for your feedback on changes in the areas of building products and methods, occupational regulation, risk and liability, building levy, and offences and penalties.

The Building System Legislative Reform Programme consultation is your opportunity to tell us what you think of the work to date. It’s significant and complex. But it’s about lifting quality in the building sector so that things go right the first time, and there are fairer outcomes if they go wrong.

Alongside this project, Building System Performance’s work programme this year is all about supporting improvements to the building system while ensuring buildings are safe, healthy and durable. There are five priority projects in total, including the Building System Legislative Reform Programme outlined above. The others are:

  • Construction Sector Accord
    Establishing a mutual commitment between government and the construction sector to work together to transform the industry for the success of New Zealand.
  • Building System Strategy
    Developing a Building System Strategy to set a clear direction for New Zealand over the next 10–15 years. The strategy will define the vision, goals and performance framework for how performance will be measured across the building system.
  • Skills Strategy
    The plan was launched on 4 October 2018, and focuses on government and the building and construction sector working together so that skilled people are available to meet the needs of the construction workforce.
  • Building Code Delivery Framework
    Strengthening the management of the Building Code so it is consistently updated, sets clear minimum performance requirements, and allows for sector innovation and best practice.

These priority projects support three outcomes:

  • partnering with industry to improve performance
  • defining a long-term measurable strategy for the building system
  • enabling and supporting the sector to respond to challenges.

This work is needed if we’re to make sure the building regulatory system is efficient, future-focused and encourages innovation.

And if you haven’t already, you can still provide feedback on the proposed changes under the Building Code biannual update programme. Changes include support for more densified housing solutions and the Healthy Homes requirements, as well as new means of testing claddings.

The consultation is open until 5 April 2019.

Anna Butler

GM Building System Performance (BSP)

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

DATE 13 March 2019

TO Building Advisory Panel


To support your discussions with industry and member organisations, below are the headlines and more detailed points that relate to the items discussed at your 8 March 2019 BAP meeting.

Government is supporting improvements to the building system so New Zealand has safe, healthy and durable buildings, and the right people with the right skills. They want to partner with industry to improve the building system and boost performance. As a sector, we need to get involved and do our part to lift quality. In April look out for the public consultation on some big changes to building law – find out what it means for you and have your say. Also in April, a joint agreement between government and industry on how to transform the industry is expected to be launched by the Minister.

  1. As a steward and the central regulator of New Zealand’s building system, BSP has a role to play in promoting safe, healthy and durable buildings.
  2. Government’s plan for New Zealand is for an economy that is growing and working for us all; and to improve the wellbeing of New Zealanders and their families.
  3. BSP has a busy work programme this year with five priority projects, and other emerging and system priorities.
  4. The priority projects will enable and support the sector to respond to challenges, define a long-term measurable strategy for the building system, and promote partnership with industry.
  5. Together these projects support improvements to the building system and the Government’s plan for New Zealand. They focus on:
    • having clear roles and responsibilities so people know what they have to do
    • making sure people have the right information to make good decisions and do their jobs well
    • holding the right people accountable if things go wrong.
  6. Over 700 people across the sector met with BSP last year helping them to understand the regulatory opportunities to lift performance.
  7. The priority projects are:
    • Construction Sector Accord
    • Building System Strategy
    • Building System Reform Programme
    • Skills Strategy
    • Building Code Delivery Framework.

8. Government and the building and construction sector are working together to improve skills and ensure skilled people are available now and into the future.


9. As a result of discussions and feedback from the sector, a cross-agency Construction Skills Action Plan was launched last October. It has six components covering:

  • Government procurement requirements around training for large construction projects;
  • The promotion of construction-related careers and qualifications through creating Job and Skills hubs, partnering with industry, supporting employer recruitment through Mana-in-Mahi (Strength in Work), and expanding the Skills for Industry partnerships;
  • Helping the sector with short-term work force needs through the review of Immigration Construction and Infrastructure skill shortage list.

10. It’s expected this work will see an additional 4000 people in construction-related careers and qualifications over the next three years (2018-2021).


11. The Construction Industry Accord establishes a mutual commitment between government and the construction sector to work together to transform the industry for the success of New Zealand.

12. An Industry Development Group of building and construction sector leaders is developing the Accord to agree on a joint commitment to transform the industry. The Accord will outline industry challenges, key priorities for change (government and industry), and industry’s contribution.

13. The Acco rd is expected to be launched in April 2019.


14. Major building law changes are proposed for building products and methods, occupational regulation, risk and liability, the building levy, and offences and penalties.

15. It focuses on improving regulation and information for building products and methods (including off-site manufacturing). Occupational regulation looks at improvements to the Licensed Building Practitioner, engineers, and plumbers, gasfitters and drainlayers scheme. And rebalancing risk and liability, how it is allocated and customers are protected is also a focus. Risk and liability aims for fairer outcomes when things go wrong, complimenting work in building products and occupational regulation to lift quality so things go right in the first place.

16. It will also include reducing the rate of the Building Levy, and updating offences and penalties.

17. Feedback will be s ought on the proposed changes in public consultation in April 2019. Legislation is planned to be introduced in 2020.

DATE 7 December 2018

The following update is from the Building Advisory Panel (BAP) within the Building Systems Performance (BSP) division of Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) – released 7 December 2018.


1. Government wants to improve the capability of the construction workforce.

2. A cross-agency Construction Skills Action Plan (Action Plan) was launched on 4 October 2018 with six initiatives. It’s being overseen by a Ministerial Group.

3. The Action Plan needs Government and industry to work together so people with the right skills will meet industry demands at the right times.

4. BAP is leading a stocktake of sector-led skills initiatives to identify where industry can provide greater leadership as well as where Government can support and leverage industry effort.


5. The Construction Industry Accord is a priority for the Minister for Building and Construction, the Minister of Housing and Urban Development, the Minister for Economic Development and the Minister for Infrastructure.

6. The Accord will demonstrate a commitment between government and the construction industry to support work to grow the industry. Industry representatives to work on the Accord with the government may be established as a sub-group of the Business Leaders’ Health and Safety Forum.

7. The Accord is expected to be jointly launched by government agencies and industry in an event at Parliament by April 2019.


8. MBIE is improving the consent system and compliance pathway for medium and high-density residential builds. The Building Code is being reviewed to make sure it contains clear expectations and solutions for this type of development.

9. MBIE is looking for a medium to high density residential development to trial a modified compliance pathway and process using flexi-Multiproof.

10. Information to help developers will be published in February/March 2019. Any changes to the Building Code will be made during MBIE’s Bi-Annual Building Code System Update. They’re in June and November each year.


11. The current consenting system for offsite manufacturing can be improved to support modern methods of construction.

12. MBIE is considering options, which could include a factory certification-type scheme and the clarification of the definition of building work in the Building Act.


13. MBIE is looking at the use of technology to improve the efficiency, transparency, consistency and user-friendliness of the general building consenting process.

14. MBIE is working to establish where it should play a role in supporting the use of digital technology to improve the building consenting process.


15. MBIE is considering how the private Building Consent Authority (BCA) model could support the Government’s goals for public and private housing as part of the More Efficient Consenting (MEC) programme.

16. The feasibility, benefits and risks of the private BCA model within current legislative settings are being assessed, as well as the potential for Housing New Zealand to become a private BCA to support the consenting of its own build programme.


17. There has been significant progress in the Building System Legislative Reform programme.

18. Policy projects in the programme that require legislative amendments include risk and liability, occupational regulation (focusing on updating the Licensed Building Practitioner scheme and licensing for safety critical engineering work), and regulation of building products and their use.

19. Proposals to rebalance risk and liability next year will include:

·options to limit BCA liability, to create a stronger incentive for other players to take more responsibility for their part in the building process

·requirements that would increase the uptake of Guarantee and Insurance Products (GIPs) for homeowners.

20. The Building Products project will address gaps in the regulatory settings for building products. Interventions may include requiring manufacturers and suppliers to provide a minimum standard of information about their products, clarifying roles and responsibilities across the system in relation to products, and enabling a robust and credible CodeMark product certification scheme.

21. The occupational regulation project is taking a targeted approach to occupational regulation to improve confidence in some system practitioners, including LBPs and engineers. It will provide the public assurance of skills, knowledge and competence in practitioners, as well as clarifying practitioner responsibilities. The work will focus on improvements to the Licensed Building Practitioners scheme, occupational licensing of safety-critical engineering work, and the statutory review of the Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Act 2006.

22. A public consultation to get feedback on the legislative reform programme changes will take place in the first quarter of 2019.

DATE: 10 April 2017 (BAP talking points PDF download here)

On 10 April 2017 MBIE announced the new members of the Building Advisory Panel.

  • Dr Helen Anderson (Building Advisory Panel Chair) – Chair of BRANZ, Councillor Institute of Directors
  • Richard Aitken – Executive Chairman of BECA Group Limited
  • Connal Townsend – former Chief Executive Property Council of New Zealand
  • David Kelly – Chief Executive Registered Master Builders, Chair Construction Industry Council
  • Pamela Bell – Chief Executive PrefabNZ
  • Steve Evans – Chief Executive Residential and Land Development, Fletcher Building Limited
  • Geoff Hunt – Chief Executive Officer Hawkins Group Limited, Chair Construction Strategy Group
  • Andrew Reding – Chair BIM Acceleration Committee
  • Peter Fehl – Director Property Services, University of Auckland
  • Dean Kimpton – Chief Operating Officer, Auckland Council
  • Janine Stewart – Partner, MinterEllisonWatts, Construction Division

The Panel will provide MBIE’s Deputy Chief Executive of Building, Resources & Markets with independent strategic advice on issues facing the construction sector. It will provide guidance, advice and direction on the ways that MBIE can support an innovative and high-performing sector.

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