SUNBIZ

Commission Keeps Close Watch On Construction Industry

  The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) has been closely monitoring the local construction industry, amid a rising number of consumer complaints. The competition agency’s chief executive officer Joel
16 Jun 2018 14:25
Commission Keeps Close Watch On Construction Industry

 

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) has been closely monitoring the local construction industry, amid a rising number of consumer complaints.

The competition agency’s chief executive officer Joel Abraham says that as the demand for products in the industry grows, “unscrupulous actors” have begun to emerge.

Mr Abraham also commended the work of the Construction Industry Council, which is holding its inaugural conference at the Warwick Fiji on the Coral Coast.

“For the FCCC, we are concerned as far as the consumer side is concerned because at the end of the day how the industry performs and carries out its services affects consumers,” Mr Abraham said.

“We’ve got heaps of complaints relating to the construction sector – such as poor workmanship, people taking contracts and not finishing them on time and more.”

The agency is also looking out for anti-competitive behavior in the industry as well, especially collusion between multiple players.

The Reserve Bank of Fiji anticipates construction and investment related activity to increase in the coming months.

This has made the FCCC even more alert.

“As you know, there are anti-trust laws that prohibit cartel-like behavior where firms can collude to do a number of things,” Mr Abraham said.

“For example, you could go to all contractors and they have become busy all of a sudden and that spikes the prices.

“What it could also do is limit or restrict supply for certain building materials or you could have competitive tender processes being compromised because they all get along with each other.

“All of these are anti-trust issues that we focus on.”

The industry is also suffering from a bad image issue.

Delegates at the conference are discussing how this can be addressed.

“What we find is that there are more established firms from which we do not receive complaints because they have got a very rigorous quality control system in place,” he said.

“Another reason FCCC is here is to meet with all the industry stakeholders and hopefully next year or in another session we will be making presentations on the requirements that anti-trust laws have and the requirements that consumer protection laws pertaining to the construction industry.”

Feedback:  sheldon.chanel@fijisun.com.fj



Laybuy it 5squares


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Covid 19 - SPC
Total
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper