Competition and Consumer Act 2010

ACCC steers toward effective port regulation

At the Ports Australia Conference in Melbourne, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Chairman Rod Sims spoke about ensuring proper regulation of privatised port assets and noted some positive outcomes in the ACCC’s engagement with governments.

Mr Sims said the current preference of governments to implement price monitoring regimes fails to ensure there is an effective constraint on monopoly pricing at Australian ports.

ACCC releases issues paper for new car retailing industry market study

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has today released an issues paper for the new car retailing industry market study announced in June this year, providing detailed information on the scope of the study and how interested parties can participate.

“A new car is one of the most significant purchases that a consumer will make and issues with these purchases can have a significant financial consequence,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

ACCC finalises investigation into GlaxoSmithKline’s pricing claims

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has concluded its investigation into whether GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) made misleading statements about a price increase of its Panadol Osteo products.

The ACCC investigated concerns that GSK had made statements that linked a price increase of Panadol Osteo to the delisting of the product from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Much to do to protect competition in the retail sector

Speaking at the AFR Retail Summit in Melbourne, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Chairman Rod Sims stressed the importance of competition.

“Competition is essential to our economic prosperity; it drives innovation and productivity, and it lowers costs and improves product quality,” Mr Sims said.

“While all economists welcome competition, of course businesses usually do not.”

Enhancing competition in retail

At the AFR Retail Summit in Melbourne, ACCC Chairman Rod Sims discusses three related themes around competition and retail; first, removing restrictions, and using the competition laws to good effect; second, addressing misuse of bargaining power in the supply chain; and third, how consumer protection plays an important role in creating a level playing field and underpinning competition and our market economy.

ACCC reviewing sharing economy policies as part of international sweep

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is assessing the review policies of sharing economy platforms as part of an international initiative targeting online reviews and endorsements.

This review is part of the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network (ICPEN)’s annual internet sweep, involving over 50 consumer protection agencies around the world. This year the focus of the sweep is ‘Online Reviews and Endorsements’ and the ACCC will be focusing on the way in which reviews operate in the sharing economy.

ACCC Chairman says Northern Territory gas has potential for East Coast market

The Northern Territory has an opportunity to play a significant role in the east coast gas market, ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said at the South East Asia Australia Offshore & Onshore Conference in Darwin today.

“However, for the Northern Territory to realise its potential in the east coast gas market it is imperative we have some onshore gas development. We also need to avoid pipeline charges making the cost of transporting the gas to the east coast prohibitive,” Mr Sims said. 

ACCC takes action against Get Qualified Australia for alleged misleading and unconscionable conduct

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Get Qualified Australia Pty Ltd (Get Qualified). The ACCC alleges that Get Qualified made false or misleading representations and engaged in misleading and unconscionable conduct in connection with its supply of services to consumers seeking recognition of their prior learning to gain qualifications.

The ACCC has also brought proceedings against Get Qualified’s sole director, Mr Adam Wadi, alleging he was knowingly concerned in Get Qualified’s contraventions. 

ACCC updates guidance material on information gathering powers

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has today released updated guidelines on its use of mandatory information gathering powers under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (the CCA). This includes a basic guide for individuals and small businesses.

Section 155 of the CCA contains compulsory information gathering powers that the ACCC can use to require parties to provide information and documents, or give evidence under oath or affirmation.

ACCC takes action against Volkswagen over diesel emission claims

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia against German company Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft (VWAG) and its Australian subsidiary, Volkswagen Group Australia Pty Ltd (VGA) (together, Volkswagen), alleging they engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct, made false or misleading representations and engaged in conduct liable to mislead the public in relation to diesel vehicle emission claims.

The ACCC alleges that between 2011 and 2015: