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02 Governance

Legislative and Government Information

Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act, 2012

The CEFC Act establishes the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, sets out the organisation’s purpose and functions and establishes arrangements for the Board, CEO and staff.

The objective of the CEFC under the CEFC Act is “to facilitate increased flows of finance into the clean energy sector”. One of the functions of the CEFC is to invest, directly and indirectly, in clean energy technologies (the investment function). The CEFC Act also specifies a number of other functions, including:

  • Liaising with relevant individuals, businesses, agencies and State and Territory governments to facilitate the CEFC investment function
  • Performance of any other functions conferred by the CEFC Act or any other Commonwealth law
  • Anything incidental or conducive to the performance of the investment function or the other functions.

Clean energy technologies are broadly defined in the CEFC Act to be energy efficiency, renewable energy and low emissions technologies. The Act expressly excludes CEFC investment in carbon capture and storage, nuclear technology and nuclear power.

During 2017-18 there were no substantial amendments to the CEFC’s enabling legislation. However, prior to the reporting period (on 31 May 2017), the Australian Government introduced the Clean Energy Finance Corporation Amendment (Carbon Capture and Storage) Bill 2017 into the Parliament to amend the CEFC Act to remove the prohibition on investing in carbon capture and storage. At the time of writing, the Bill was waiting to proceed through the House of Representatives and had not been introduced into the Senate.

Responsible Ministers

Under the CEFC Act, the CEFC has two responsible Ministers. At 30 June 2018, they were:

  • The Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, Minister for the Environment and Energy; and
  • Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, Minister for Finance.

For the period 2017-18 the CEFC was located within the Environment and Energy portfolio.

Nominated Minister

The nominated Minister is one of the responsible Ministers and exercises additional powers and functions under the CEFC Act. The CEFC Act provides that the responsible Ministers must determine between them which is to be the nominated Minister. For the period 2017-18 the nominated Minister was The Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, Minister for the Environment and Energy.

Ministerial Powers of Direction


The CEFC Act is structured in such a way as to maximise the CEFC’s operational independence, particularly with respect to investment decision-making. Ministerial powers to direct under the CEFC Act are limited primarily to the Investment Mandate.

The CEFC can be directed by Ministers to pay surplus funds to the CEFC Special Account, since the CEFC was not conceived as having a large cash management function. Such a direction has been made in the past and was in effect throughout the reporting period.

Operative Dates Nominated Ministers
Throughout the period Ministerial Direction to repay surplus monies to the CEFC Special Account, signed 5 May 2016 by the Hon Greg Hunt MP, Minister for the Environment, and Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, Minister for Finance.
Figure 17: Ministerial directions

Investment Mandate

The responsible Ministers may issue one or more directions to the Board under sub-section 64(1) of the CEFC Act, known as the Investment Mandate. This is the means by which the Government of the day provides instruction as to policies to be pursued by the CEFC in performing its investment function, provided that this:

  • Does not have a purpose of directing the Corporation to make or not make a particular investment
  • Is not inconsistent with the CEFC Act (including the object of the CEFC Act). 
Name Date Issued Date Registered Date of Effect
Clean Energy Finance Corporation Investment Mandate Direction 2016 (No.2)* 13 December 2016 10 January 2017 11 January 2017
Figure 18: Investment Mandates in effect 2017-18

Government Policy Orders

The PGPA Act allows the Australian Government to issue directions to the CEFC by means of a Government Policy Order (GPO). No GPOs applied to the CEFC during 2017-18.

Statement of Compliance

The CEFC had no instances of non-compliance with Ministerial Directions (including the Investment Mandate) or GPOs in the 2017-18 year.


Commonwealth Procurement Rules are not applicable to the CEFC. Procurement occurs via the most efficient, effective, economical and ethical means possible, which can involve direct engagement of service providers based on quotes, select tenders, engagement of external advisors, and in some instances joining Australian Government procurement arrangements. Under section 74 of the CEFC Act, the CEFC must specify in the Annual Report the details for each procurement contract on foot within the financial year valued at above $80,000.

Contract Date Contract Value: $ FY18 Value Expensed: $ Contracting Party Purpose
June 2013 590,665 73,783 Marsh Pty Ltd D&O Insurance for period 14 June 2013 to 14 June 2021
June 2015 555,591 213,983 Technology One Ltd 5-year License Fees, 3-year minimum maintenance and support, initial implementation costs and cloud service fee for TechnologyOne software
July 2015 723,377 (51,994) The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (Q.) Lease of premises at Level 8, 140 Ann Street, Brisbane from 15 July 2015 to 14 July 2018: surrendered in May 2018 resulting in a refund of two months’ rental
March 2016 4,331,218 766,244 Dexus Property Group Lease of premises at Level 17, 1 Bligh Street, Sydney from 1 March 2016 to 28 February 2021
May 2017 102,534 85,209 Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Information security strategy, policies and awareness
May 2017 168,300 155,639 Price–waterhouse–Coopers Internal Audit engagement for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018
May 2017 4,046,431 752,824 Riverside Development Pty Ltd Lease of premises at Level 25, 71 Eagle Street, Brisbane for 18 May 2017 to 30 September 2022
July 2017 91,345 91,345 Australian Government Comcover General, professional indemnity, D&O, property including business interruption and travel insurance for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018
July 2017 402,644 64,855 Axiom Workplaces Pty Ltd Fit-out of premises at Level 13, 222 Exhibition Street, Melbourne
July 2017 194,585 194,585 Bloomberg Australia Pty Ltd Bloomberg terminal and NEF All Insight Package Level III
July 2017 357,370 357,370 Datacom Systems Pty Ltd IT support, applications and hardware for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018 along with an Enterprise Information Review Report and system health check
July 2017 596,011 596,011 Herbert Smith Freehills Legal fees incurred for various investment projects for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018
July 2017 113,978 113,978 King & Wood Mallesons Legal fees incurred for various investment projects for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018
July 2017 568,836 89,044 Knight Frank Australia Pty Ltd Lease of premises at Level 13, 222 Exhibition Street, Melbourne for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2022
July 2017 135,112 135,112 Macquarie Telecom Pty Ltd Provision of telecommunications, data and hosting for July 2017 to 30 June 2018
July 2017 274,310 274,310 National Australia Bank Bond custody fees for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018
July 2017 632,104 632,104 QBT Pty Ltd Work travel and incidental costs for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018 under the whole of government travel procurement program
July 2017 80,908 80,908 Screentide Pty Ltd Video case studies providing insights into CEFC finance in action
August 2017 151,959 151,959 Johnson Advisory Pty Ltd Recruitment services
October 2017 87,106 87,106 Noble Brands Worldwide Annual Report design, production and printing, plus other smaller-scale design and print projects
November 2017 81,436 81,436 Gerard Daniels Australia Pty Ltd Recruitment services
January 2018 180,735 90,368 Energeia Pty Ltd Electric vehicle market study: 50 per cent of cost shared with ARENA
January 2018 218,763 76,232 Inc 3-year License Fees renewal, maintenance and support for Loan Management System
January 2018 83,732 83,732 The Specialist Recruitment Group Pty Ltd – Taylor Root Temporary staff and recruitment services
March 2018 84,700 42,350 GHD Pty Ltd Biofuels research project: 50 per cent of cost shared with ARENA
March 2018 216,095 216,095 Glass and Co Pty Ltd Enterprise Information Management project costs based on individual statements of work
March 2018 90,465 90,465 Price–waterhouse–Coopers AASB 9 “financial instruments” diagnostic workshop, provision for impairment modelling and preparation of documentation to support CEFC adoption of AASB 9
June 2018 202,950 175,450 Australian National Audit Office Audit of financial statements for year ended 30 June 2018
Total 15,363,260 5,720,503    
Figure 19: Procurement contracts 2017-18