The Research & Development (R&D) Tax Incentive is the Australian Government’s primary innovation support program, providing over 11,000 companies with over $2.5 billion in tax offsets each year to encourage business to invest more in R&D activities that are likely to deliver spillover benefits to the broader economy and lift productivity growth.

The Industry Research and Development Regulations  and the Industry Research and Development Decision-making Principles under the Industry Research and Development Act 1986 have been remade with minimal changes to ensure continuity of administration of the R&D Tax Incentive, as the 2011 version of these instruments were due to automatically end this year.

The Regulations direct the way we manage approved forms, findings certificates, and requirements for research service providers. They commenced on 22 March 2022. The Decision-making Principles apply in relation to decisions in relation to extensions of time, refusal to make requested findings, and variations of registrations. They commenced on 31 March 2022. The changes were informed by public consultation.

The updated version of the Regulations refers to the ANZSRC 2020, which came about due to a review to ensure the classification reflected current practice and to improve coverage, coherence and consistency across the classification. ANZSRC 2020 was jointly developed by the ABS, Stats NZ, the Australian Research Council and the New Zealand Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and replaces ANZSRC 2008. Adopting the ANZSRC 2020 means that our forms that rely on the definition of ‘field of research’ are changing to include the updated classification.

Key changes: Regulations


Industry Research and Development Regulations 2022 Industry Research and Development Regulations 2011
The definition of research field now means a field of research (FoR) category mentioned in the Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) 2020. This definition will apply to registration of research service providers for financial years beginning on or after 1 July 2022. The definition of research field is a FoR category mentioned in the Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) 2008. This definition will continue to apply to registration of research service providers for financial years ending on or before 30 June 2022.
Research service providers register against FoR classifications in the ANZSRC 2020 for financial years beginning on or after 1 July 2022. Research service providers register against FoR classifications mentioned in the ANZSRC 2008 for financial years ending on or before 30 June 2022. 
 Our forms for applications for Advance and Overseas Findings and registration of R&D activities ask you to select the appropriate FoR from the new ANZSRC 2020 going forward from now.  Our forms asked you to select the appropriate FoR from the ANZSRC 2008.
 Research service providers are no longer required to demonstrate that they are ‘competent’, as described in Subsection 3.02(3) under the Industry Research and Development Regulations 2011. This removes duplication in the application form. This change applies for financial years beginning on or after 1 July 2022.  Research service providers are required to demonstrate that they are ‘competent’, as described in Subsection 3.02(3), in addition to other criteria and conditions. This requirement continues to apply to financial years ending on or before 30 June 2022.

Key changes: Decision-making Principles


New Law Current Law
Extensions of time are typically limited to 92 days. This means the period of extension is the same for everyone, regardless of the month in which the application for an extension of time is made. This change applies from 31 March 2022. Extensions of time are typically limited to three months.

More information

Find out more information on Research Service Providers and applying for the R&D Tax Incentive.

Find out how to contact us if you have any questions.