Competition authorities around the world must work together to meet significant and evolving challenges in global markets, and consider whether traditional approaches to assessing mergers remained fit for purpose, ACCC Chair Rod Sims said tonight.
Mr Sims, speaking at a gala dinner in Melbourne for the International Competition Network’s merger workshop, said the meteoric expansion of large digital platforms, much driven by acquisitions, was one of many challenges confronting global competition authorities.
The ACCC has today welcomed competition commissioners and agency leaders from ASEAN countries and New Zealand for three days of meetings in Brisbane. This will be the first time many of South East Asia’s newly appointed competition commissioners will have met their regional counterparts to discuss key competition law developments in the region.
The ACCC has joined the International Competition Network’s ‘Framework on Competition Agency Procedures’ (CAP) alongside more than 60 other global agencies.
The CAP provides a multilateral framework that promotes procedural fairness in relation to the way regulators conduct competition investigations and enforcement.
“This framework promotes cooperation and the exchange of experience between competition authorities around the world on the important issue of procedural fairness,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said.
In his annual CEDA address, Chairman Rod Sims launched the ACCC's 2018 Compliance and Enforcement policy. This year, the ACCC will focus on consumer issues in broadband services and energy, competition in the financial services and commercial construction sectors, systemic consumer guarantee issues, and conduct that may contravene the new misuse of market power and concerted practices provisions.
The ACCC's Competition Law Implementation Program (CLIP) delivers targeted capacity building and technical assistance to Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states to help combat anti-competitive activities in individual markets and the ASEAN region, supported by the AANZFTA Economic Cooperation Support Program (AECSP).
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and the National Development and Reform Commission of the People's Republic of China (NDRC) have signed a memorandum of understanding.
“This agreement paves the way for increased engagement between the ACCC and NDRC on international cartel investigations affecting Australian and Chinese markets,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
"The agreement allows the agencies to take coordinated action in response to anti-competitive conduct, including through the exchange of information and evidence.