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FCCC :Provisions Of Competition Law In Fiji

FCCC :Provisions Of Competition Law In Fiji
September 11
10:44 2017

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) has been established  under Section 7 of the Fijian  Competition and Consumer Commission Act 2010. The provisions of the Consumer Law in Fiji are covered under Part 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9 of the FCCC Act 2010.

Part 3 of FCCC Act 2010

What is an Access agreement?

An agreement granting access to infrastructure facilities in an access regime; or

An agreement to services provided by means of infrastructure facilities.

What is Access regime?

The Access regime is a  scheme set up to permit a third party access to infrastructure facilities. It is also a scheme set up to permit a thirdparty to a service provided by means of infrastructure facilities.

What is the objective of providing Access agreements?

The Fiji Competition and Consumer Commission promotes effective competition and ensures that non-discriminatory access to regulated industries, which have monopoly control of infrastructure facilities and services.

Why have statutory rights to Access?

The monopoly companies are in a position to abuse their powers charge monopoly prices for their services to other companies;

Providing access to infrastructure facilities and services, introduce competition that improves the quality of services provided at a competitive and reasonable cost;

The ability for all providers to supply a wide range of services to consumers to choose from.

Process of Access Agreements:

Notification of Access Agreements

A person who proposes to enter an access agreement must notify the FCCC of the proposal not less than 30 days before entering, amending or varying an Agreement.

Registration of Access

A person who enters an Access Agreement must notify of the Commission of the fact. The Commission upon receiving the notification must  register the Access Agreement made as a form of the record keeping. The following details should be recorded for registration:

the names of the parties to the agreement;

the regulated industry, and the particular services, to which it relates;

the date on which it was made; and

Failure to notify the Proposals and Agreements

It is an offence under section 26 of FCCC Act 2010 if a person fails to notify the FCCC of the proposal to enter, vary or amend an Access Agreement.

Failure to notify the FCCC makes the Agreement invalid and unenforceable. FCCC must give a report to the Minister on the failure to notify a proposal to enter, vary or amend an access agreement.

Once an Agreement is unenforceable or invalid, either party to the Agreement can seek the assistance of the FCCC under Section 31 of the FCCC Act 2010 to negotiate the said Agreement.

If either party disputes over certain terms and condition of the agrrement, they may seek arbitration under Part 4 of FCCC Act 2010.

What are the penalties if an offence is committed?

The penalities for the offence are stipulated under Section 129 of the FCCC Act 2010.

Next Week: Part 4 of FCC Act 2010- ARBITRATION OF DISPUTES

For more information/details on Fijian Competition and Consumer Act 2010, visit our website on http://www.commcomm.gov.fj or join us on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/commcomm.gov.fj

 

Feedback: maraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj

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