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Provisions Of Competition Law In Fiji

Provisions Of Competition Law In Fiji
January 08
10:29 2018

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (“FCCC”), formerly known as Fiji Commerce Commission, has been established under Section 7 of the Fijian  Competition and Consumer Commission Act 2010 (“FCCC Act 2010”).

The provisions of Competition and Consumer Law in Fiji are covered under Part 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9 of the FCCC Act 2010.

Part 6 of FCCC Act 2010 :-

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission deals with all the competition matters under Part six (6) of FCCC Act 2010. The Part six (6) of FCCC Act is known as “Restrictive Trade Practices”.

This part of the Act outlines the provisions which are classified as “Restrictive Trade Practices”.

Section 67 of FCCC Act 2010: Anti-competitive Conducts!

Section 67 of the FCCC Act 2010 outlines the provisions, which are as follows:

67-(1) A person engages in prescribed anti-competitive conduct if the person-

(a) has a substantial degree of power in a market; and

(b) takes advantage of that power with the effect or like effect, of substantially lessening competition in that or another market.

(2) A person must not engage in prescribed anti-competitive conduct.

What is Anti-competitive Conducts!

Anti-competitive Conducts are certain business practices that limit, lessen or prevent competition in market(s), and are deemed illegal under FCCC Act 2010.

Section 67 of FCCC Act 2010 prohibits contracts, arrangements, understandings or concerted practices that have the purpose, effect or likely effect of substantially lessening competition in a market, even if that conduct does not meet the stricter definitions of other anti-competitive conduct such as cartels.     Further, engaging in the following practices also amounts to anti-competitive conducts – exclusive dealing, misuse of market power, refusal to supply products or services, collective bargaining, imposing minimum resale prices, predatory pricing, tie-in agreements, price discrimination, price fixing, allocating markets, and so forth.

The FCCC in its earlier article has talked about the market power and its effects on the competition, the consumers and the economy as a whole.

This article deliberates on practices that amounts to anti-competitive conducts.

What is a Cartel!

A cartel exists when businesses agree to act together instead of competing with each other.

By engageing in this conduct, businesses make agreements with their competitors to fix prices, rig bids, share markets or restrict outputs, and disadvantaing the consumers and businesses by inflating prices, reducing choices and damaging the economy.

There are certain forms of anti-competitive conduct that are known as cartel conduct. They include:

Businesses struggling to compete fairly and maintain profits may be tempted to deliberately and secretly set up or join a cartel with their competitors.

FCCC’s advice!

Businesses must not engage in the above highlighted conducts which are prohibited under the FCCC Act 2010.

By engaging in such prohibited conducts, the businessess would possibly breach section 67 of FCCC Act 2010.

The FCCC wishes to inform all the consumer and businesses out there that, if you feel that the businesses are engaging in such prohibited conducts, you may report to FCCC accordingly.

It is imperative that business work towards ensuring that Fijian markets remain healthy and the benefits of healthy competition is passed down to all Fijian consumers.

Feedback:  maraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj

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