Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Commerce Act strengthened

New Zealand's Commerce Act is being strengthened to give the Commerce Commission more teeth and to bring New Zealand in line with its key trading partner Australia.

Acting Commerce Minister Trevor Mallard says offending body corporates will face higher penalties as a result.

"To bring us into line with Australia we will amend Section 36 of the Act which deals with anti-competitive behaviour by dominant firms in a market," he said.

"We are replacing the phrase “dominance” with the lower threshold of “a substantial degree of power in a market”; and replacing “use” with “take advantage of”.

"This means the section will apply to a greater number of firms and markets.

"We're also wanting to hear what the public has to say about how best to deal with the difficult task of proving that a firm acted with an anti-competitive purpose". There are two proposals on this which will be referred to the Commerce Select Committee for comment. These are:
 reversing the burden of proof on establishing “purpose” when the Commerce Commission is the applicant; or
 providing that purpose may be inferred from relevant conduct and circumstances.
"The merger and acquisition restriction in section 47 is to be refocussed to align with Australia.

"That will restrict mergers that have the effect of substantially lessening competition and will allow the High Court and Commerce Commission to take into account the full range of anti-competitive mergers.

Other matters in the package include:
 Increasing the penalties for offences by body corporates from the existing maximum of $5 million up to $10 million;
 Removing the requirement for the Commerce Commission to give an undertaking as to damages when seeking interim injunctions; and
 Removing a provision in the existing bill that may have inadvertently prohibited some franchising and other similar pro-competitive agreements.

"The new supplementary order paper will be referred to the Commerce Select Committee before the middle of the year and the public will have an opportunity to provide submissions to the Committee," Trevor Mallard said.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election