Freedom of Information

Members of the public are able to make representations in writing to IBA about a range of policy, the administration of IBA and other matters. IBA provides:

  • contact with its staff via a freecall phone line, email, and post
  • timely information to clients to give them the opportunity to raise any concerns
  • opportunities for stakeholder engagement
  • instructions in its Customer Service Charter and on this website informing clients how to lodge a complaint.

IBA is required to comply with the Senate Standing Order No. 6 Harradine Motion which requires all Australian Government departments and agencies to produce a File Index every six months for tabling before parliament.

Documents in the categories listed below are held by IBA as paper records or on optical audio or digital media.

  • briefs, submissions and reports
  • administration documents from areas such as human resources, finance, property management and resource management
  • documents relating to the provision of IBA-specific services, including individual case files and papers
  • separate records of Board and management meetings, such as agendas and minutes
  • general correspondence and associated categories of documents according to subject matter
  • ministerial, interdepartmental and general correspondence
  • internal administration papers
  • IBA policy documents and procedures
  • copies of instruments of delegations, contracts and deeds
  • requests for external advice and copies of notes and advice given
  • briefing papers prepared for ministers
  • answers to parliamentary questions
  • training material
  • FOI request files and papers dealing with consideration of those requests, financial reports, expenditure estimates and expenditure reports.

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) gives you the right to:

  • access copies of documents (except exempt documents) we hold
  • ask for information we hold about you to be corrected if it is incomplete, incorrect, out of date or misleading
  • seek a review of our decision not to allow you access to a document.

There are some documents you can access without making an FOI request because the FOI act requires that we publish documents we use in making decisions and policy documents. You can access these documents by searching our website.

There are also some documents or parts of documents we may not grant you access to because they are exempt from the FOI Act. This includes those documents where disclosure of the documents or the information in them:

  • is in relation to our commercial activities
  • is that which secrecy provisions in other legislation applies
  • could reasonably be expected to prejudice the proper administration of the law or the protection of public safety
  • would involve the unreasonable disclosure of personal information of another person or constitute a breach of confidence
  • is subject to legal professional privilege
  • relates to government deliberative processes
  • is contrary to the public interest.

How to lodge a freedom of information request

Your request must:

  • be in writing (by email or letter)
  • state that the request is an application for the purposes of the Act
  • provide enough information for us to identify the document sought
  • provide details of where notices may be sent to you (email or postal address)
  • address your request to the agency (IBA) or the Minister (Minister Scullion, Minister for Indigenous Affairs).

You request should be sent to:

IBA FOI Coordinator
Indigenous Business Australia
PO Box 650
Fyshwick ACT 2609

Fees and Charges

There is no application fee for an FOI request.

There are no processing charges for requests for access to documents containing only personal information about you. However, processing charges apply to other requests. The most common charges are:

Search and retrieval: time we spend searching for or retrieving a document $15.00 per hour
Decision making: time we spend in deciding to grant or refuse a request, including examining documents, consulting with other parties and making deletions First five hours: Nil
Subsequent hours: $20 per hour
Transcript: preparing a transcript from a sound recording, shorthand or similar medium $4.40 per page of transcript
Photocopying $0.10 per page
Inspection: supervision by an agency officer of your inspection of documents or hearing or viewing an audio or visual recording at our premises $6.25 per half hour (or part thereof)
Delivery: posting or delivering a copy of a document at your request Cost of postage or delivery

If IBA decides to impose a charge, you will be given a written estimate and the basis of the calculation. We will ask you to pay the charge before your request is processed.

You can ask for the charge to be waived or reduced on the basis of financial hardship or on the grounds of public interest. If you do so, you will need to explain your reasons and provide evidence.

What you can expect from us

We will tell you within 14 days that we have received your request. We will also give you an estimate of the charges that apply to your request. We will give you our decision within 30 days unless that time has been extended. If a document contains information about third parties, we will need to consult those parties and may need to extend the time to give you our decision by another 30 days. We may also seek your agreement to extend the time by up to 30 days if your request is complex.

If you disagree with our decision

If you are unhappy with our decision in relation to your FOI application, you can ask for the decision to be reviewed.

Internal review

You can request in writing that we reconsider our decision through an internal review. An internal review will be conducted by another officer in our agency. We will advise you of our new decision within 30 days of receiving your request.

Information Commissioner review

You can ask the Australian Information Commissioner to review our original decision or internal review decision within 60 days of the date of decision (or 30 days after you are notified if you are an affected third party). The Information Commissioner can affirm or vary the decision or substitute a new decision. The Information Commissioner may decide not to conduct a review in certain circumstances.


If you are unhappy with the way we have handled your request, you can contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. The Commonwealth Ombudsman can also investigate complaints about our actions. The Commonwealth Ombudsman and the Information Commissioner will consult to determine who should investigate the matter and to avoid the same matter being investigated twice.


In addition to being bound by the secrecy obligations set out in the ATSI Act, IBA is also subject to the Privacy Act 1988 as amended from time to time, which requires that we comply with the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) set out in the Act.

These APPs set out how organisations such as IBA should collect, store, use and disclose personal information and how individuals can access records containing their personal information.

IBA respects the privacy of all users of this website and is committed to maintaining the privacy and accuracy of your personal information, and to protecting such information from loss, misuse, unauthorised access, alteration and destruction.

We invite you to read more about IBA’s Privacy Policy (PDF 189KB, new window).


Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) is subject to secrecy obligations set out in its enabling legislation, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) Act 2005.

Section 191 of the Act prevents certain people including the IBA Board, IBA Chief Executive Officer and IBA staff from divulging or communicating to any person any information concerning the affairs of another person or producing to any person any document relating to the affairs of another person unless the disclosure is authorised.

For further information regarding your right to freedom of information, please contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

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