Competition and Consumer Amendment (Competition Policy Review) Bill 2016
Treasury is conducting a consultation on the Exposure Draft Bill relating to the recommendations made by the Harper Panel in 2015. The Exposure Draft bill was released on 5 September 2016 and consultation closes on 30 September 2016 (note consultation has been extended until 28 October for all aspects of the bill other than those relating to misuse of market power).
I have prepared a mark-up (both clean and with mark-up showing) of the proposed amendments:
Contents of the Exposure Draft Bill
The Exposure Draft Bill is broken down into the following schedules:
- Definition of competition
- Price signalling and concerted practices
- Exclusionary provisions
- Covenants affecting competition
- Secondary boycotts
- Misuse of market power
- Third line forcing
- Resale price maintenance
- Authorisations, notifications and class exemptions
- Admissions of fact
- Power to obtain information, documents and evidence
- Access to services
Detail on each forthcoming - further detail about how the proposed changes align with the Harper recommendations can be found on the report/consultation page.
Misuse of market power
The exposure draft proposes repealing the current provision and replacing it with the following:
(1) A corporation that has a substantial degree of power in a market must not engage in conduct that has the purpose, or has or is likely to have the effect, of substantially lessening competition in that or any other market.
(2) Without limiting the matters to which regard may be had in determining for the purposes of subsection (1) whether conduct has the purpose, or has or is likely to have the effect, of substantially lessening competition in a market, regard must be had to the extent to which:
(a) the conduct has the purpose of, or has or would be likely to have the effect of, increasing competition in that market, including by enhancing efficiency, innovation, product quality or price competiveness in that market; and
(b) the conduct has the purpose of, or has or would be likely to have the effect of, lessening competition in that market, including by preventing, restricting, or deterring the potential for competitive conduct or new entry into that market.
Consultation on the Bill will take place until 30 September 2016 for proposed changes to misuse of market power laws and until 28 October 2016 for other aspects of the bill.See report/consultation page.
Media and commentary
Clifford Chance, 'Australian Government releases exposure draft legislation amending Australia's Competition Laws and provides businesses the opportunity to make their final comments and suggestions' (September 2016)