The High Court in Port of Newcastle said the principles of interpretation are ‘familiar’ and ‘can seem banal’1. This case, about ‘access’ to port facilities2, is a refresher on four of those principles. 1 – The term is read as ‘always speaking’3. 2 – It is construed within its ‘broader context’. 3 – The applicable ‘shade of ordinary meaning’ involves a constructional choice. 4 – That choice is made by applying the purposive principle reflected in the ‘statutory instruction’ of s 15AA4. Given the legislative purpose was to promote economic efficiency and effective competition, ‘access’ meant the right or opportunity to benefit from or use a system or service. This case is a vivid illustration of our ‘well settled’ method at work. The principles involved may indeed seem ‘banal’ (boring) but (A) they are the keys to meaning, & (B) they are obligatory. iTip – click & read the case (at [85-97]).
Gordon Brysland – Tax Counsel Network
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In this episode:
Credits – Gordon Brysland & Oliver Hood. Happy holidays everyone!
1 Port of Newcastle Operations v Glencore Coal Assets  HCA 39 (at ).
2 Part IIIA of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).