13 July 2018

Appointment – full-time Chair – Productivity Commission


I am pleased to announce that the Governor-General has appointed Mr Michael Brennan as the full-time Chair (and Commissioner) of the Productivity Commission (PC) for a five-year period commencing from 11 September 2018.

In April 2018, I requested that the Secretary to the Treasury, Mr John Fraser undertake a full merit-based selection process for the Chair position. Mr Peter Harris advised that he would not seek reappointment when his current term as Chair expires on 10 September. A Selection Advisory Committee, Chaired by Mr Fraser, along with the Australian Public Service Commissioner, Mr John Lloyd and the Secretary of the Department of Health Ms Glenys Beauchamp as other members of the committee, conducted interviews and provided their Selection Report to me.

Mr Brennan was recommended unanimously by the Panel.

The PC is an independent authority established under the Productivity Commission Act 1998 and is the Australian Government's principal advisory body on microeconomic policy and regulation. The Commission's work covers all sectors of the economy and focuses on areas of Australian Government as well as State and Territory responsibility.

Mr Brennan has deep experience in public policy advisory and served as a Deputy Secretary for the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance prior to joining the Commonwealth Treasury as the Deputy Secretary of Fiscal Group.

I congratulate Mr Brennan on his appointment and look forward to him making a significant contribution to the important work of the Commission going forward.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Mr Peter Harris AO as the outgoing Chair of the Commission. Mr Harris has demonstrated strong leadership and dedication in advocating for important public policy reforms, balancing a range of community interests in contentious and often complex policy areas.

Mr Harris has made major contributions to a range of inquiries of significance to the prosperity of Australian community, including the inquiries into superannuation and competition in the Australian financial system, and the substantial reform agenda offered by the first five-yearly Productivity Review.