ACCC re-authorises Tyre Stewardship Scheme

The ACCC is granting authorisation to Tyre Stewardship Australia (TSA) to continue its Tyre Stewardship Scheme, which is designed to increase the recycling of tyres and use of products made from recycled tyres.

Tyre Stewardship Australia sought authorisation of specific provisions of the guidelines that govern the operation of the Tyre Stewardship Scheme. Broadly, those provisions impose obligations on participants to commit to the environmentally sound use of used tyres and to only deal with accredited businesses along the tyre supply chain.

ACCC concerned about Transurban's interest in WestConnex

The ACCC has today raised preliminary competition concerns about Sydney Transport Partners’ proposed acquisition of a majority interest in the WestConnex project. Sydney Transport Partners is a consortium led by Transurban (ASX: TCL).

The ACCC has today published a statement of issues, outlining preliminary views on the likely impact of the proposed acquisition.

Transurban controls 15 of 19 toll road concessions in Australia, and seven of the nine existing concessions in New South Wales.

Record $46 million in penalties for Yazaki cartel

The Full Federal Court has today ordered Japanese company Yazaki Corporation (Yazaki) to pay increased penalties of $46 million for cartel conduct, following an appeal by the ACCC. This is the highest penalty ever handed down under the Competition and Consumer Act (2010).

The trial judge had earlier found that Yazaki had engaged in anti-competitive cartel conduct in the supply of wire harnesses used in the manufacture of the Toyota Camry. The Full Court dismissed Yazaki’s cross-appeal of the trial judge’s finding that it had engaged in cartel conduct.

HCF authorised to set capped prices for dental services

The ACCC has authorised health insurer HCF and participating dentists to agree on a maximum price for some dental services provided to HCF members.

HCF intends to open its own dental clinics in locations where it already runs its “More For Teeth” program.

Under the More For Teeth program, participating dentists cap fees for HCF members for a limited number of basic preventative and diagnostic dental services, enabling HCF to offer “no gap” arrangements at participating dentists.

Petrol prices are not the same - report on petrol prices by major retailer in 2017

An in-depth petrol report detailing annual average retail petrol prices throughout 2017 and identifying the highest and lowest priced major retailers in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

NBN users shift to higher speeds

More and more consumers are receiving higher-speed NBN plans and the 50Mbps plan now makes up 26 per cent of all NBN plans, up from just 4.6 per cent in December 2017.

The ACCC’s ninth quarterly Wholesale Market Indicators Report found the number of 50Mbps services being acquired from NBN Co increased from 158,959 to 989,360 in the quarter to 31 March 2018.

“Nearly one million customers are now using a plan with 50Mbps speeds. This is a remarkable shift in just three months,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.