When I addressed the English Forum for Construction Law Reform at an address chaired by the one time English Minister for Construction Sir Tony Baldry MP in 1997, I made reference to the "eight countries of Australia" when discussing our country's building control regime.

I gave this description when asked how I would describe the Australian building regime. I responded “how would you describe the European building regulatory regime?” The retort was met with incredulity, and although the person who aimed the question didn’t say “you idiot,” his intonation when he said “there isn’t…