by Dom Wiseman

Sales of non-compliant engines by local outboard engine retailers, have been given a 12 month extension, in a surprise move by the Department of Environment and Energy.

The Department has decided to allow local outboard engine retailers, an extra 12 months of grace to sell their remaining uncertified stock, following new rules agreed and put in place last year regarding engine emissions. All models which don’t meet the new Australian emissions standards introduced last year, were originally due to cease sales from 1 July 2019.

In what has been discussed as a surprise move, the Department of Environment and Energy confirmed that the extension was approved following a number of concerns raised from retailers and boat dealers who have been experiencing significant difficulties as a consequence of the severe weather conditions and drought. Retail demand has copped a significant blow in recent times and the extension allows small businesses more time to sell their remaining uncertified stock.

While marine engine suppliers have been committing to running down stock to meet this year’s deadline, the Outboard Engine Distributors Association (OEDA), which represents local outboard engine suppliers, confirmed the extension will not only relieve some pressure from local outboard engine retailers, but will also allow boating retailers with non-compliant marine engine products an additional grace period to sell their stock.

The Outboard Engine Distributors Association confirmed that, “OEDA will continue to work with government, the Department, our dealers and boat builder partners to ensure a smooth transition to compliant marine products throughout our network”.

The ban on the importation of non-compliant engines remains unchanged.  The new rules which came into effect last year remain tightly in place. The extension has been provided as a strictly one-off reprieve and the ban will come into strict effect again as of 1 July 2020.