Competition Law Reading Room
The Introduction of Competition Policy in Australia:
The Role of Ron Bannerman
Stephen Corones, David Merrett and David Round
(2007) 47(2) Australian Economic History Review 178-199
'The 1965 legislation to curb restrictive trade practices has been widely regarded as weak. By contrast, the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) has been considered as providing the platform for a more comprehensive competition policy. This paper argues that the 1965– 67 and 1971 Acts were more effective than has been commonly recognised in raising awareness about the extent of restrictive trade practices, discrediting price agreements and laying the foundations for the 1974 Act. The role of Ron Bannerman, the sole Commissioner of Trade Practices, was critical to their success. This paper uses parliamentary debates, Bannerman’s published works and an interview with him undertaken in early 2005.'
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