Parliament

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

 

Govt's Commerce Amendment Bill an Invitation to Corruption

The Government’s Introduction of Market Studies via the Commerce Amendment Bill is a sad day for both the Government and the National Party,” according to ACT leader David Seymour.

“The Commerce Commission, when investigating an allegation of the abuse of market power, has enormous powers. The Commission’s powers to demand information exceed those of the Police. It is extraordinary that the Commission will now be able to unleash itself on an industry without a specific allegation to respond to.

“As New Zealand Initiative Chair Roger Partridge has said, unleashing the Commission’s powers on markets where there is not even an allegation to respond to is like treating a healthy person with chemotherapy just in case they have cancer.

“New Zealand already has great difficulty with bureaucracy, too much red tape and regulation prevents us from raising productivity. Complying with a Market Study, a high stakes exercise where companies are put under subpoena for detailed data will be enormously expensive and add to the culture of bureaucracy and compliance over innovation and production.

“That this legislation allows a Minister to initiate the study is an invitation to corruption. Imagine how a Minister who has the power to impose an enormously costly exercise on a whole industry. It is not the New Zealand way for an individual to have such power over an industry at their discretion.

“The way that the legislation has been rushed through to undertake a particular market study, of the retail fuel market, when the Prime Minister has already predetermined the outcome by saying consumers are being ‘fleeced,’ confirms ACT’s worst fears that the Commerce Amendment Bill will be misused for political purposes, from the get-go.

"No doubt both Labour and National think they will make good cheaper for consumers, but they misunderstand the problem. The real problem with New Zealand’s economy is a lack of scale to support more competitors. Fundamentally, we live on the side of a mountain range the size of the United States Eastern Sea Board, sparsely populated with fewer than five million people.

“Competitors, such as the Warehouse in food, have found out how tough the New Zealand grocery market is, as did fuel retailers in the late 2000s. Other would-be competitors do not need a market study done with extraordinary powers of compulsion to decide whether or not to enter the market, they have already made their decision.

“If the policy is abysmal, the politics of this are simple,” says Mr Seymour, “National have agreed to this bad policy, in fact they initiated the policy of Market Studies while in Government. With National’s opposition gone, the Government has free reign to implement low quality policy. It is likely ACT will stand alone in opposing this legislation and we are proud to stand for sensible economics in the face of weak populism."

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Crowdsale And Crowdfunding Campaign: Help Create The Future Of Independent News

Two weeks to go! The Scoop 3.0 plan aims to create NZ’s first community-owned, distributed news and media intelligence ecosystem in 2019. We believe this ScoopPro media monetisation approach can be scaled and spread globally to support local and independent news efforts in regional New Zealand and around the world.

Scoop is an ecosystem, it would not exist without those who contribute to it, read it and rely on it for professional media purposes. Generous past support from this ecosystem has enabled us to come this far in developing our business model. Support our PledgeMe Campaign>>

 

14/11: Two Years’ Progress Since The Kaikoura Earthquake

Mayor John Leggett said it was a day for reflection, but also a time to recognise the work by many people to support progress towards recovery made across Marlborough since November 2016. More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO:

Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>

ALSO:

Two Years Since Kaikoura: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Royal Commission Into Child Abuse

Obviously, it is good news that the coalition government has broadened the scope of its Royal Commission into the abuse of children, beyond its previous focus on children in state care. More>>

ALSO:

Cases Delayed: Court Staff Refuse To Handle Sentencing Papers

Dozens of court cases have reportedly been delayed, as court staff escalate industrial action at two Auckland courts by enforcing a ban on handling sentencing papers. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Primary Teachers Rolling Strikes

RNZ Report: More than 100,000 primary school students in Auckland will be home from school today as teachers and principals walk off the job for the second time this year. It's the start of a week of rolling one-day strikes around the country, after the collapse of contract negotiations last Thursday. More>>

ALSO:

"Process Was Sound": Inquiry Into Haumaha Appointment Released

The Inquiry’s purpose was to examine, identify, and report on the adequacy of the process that led to the appointment. It found the process was sound and no available relevant information was omitted. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels