Chairman Rod Sims outlines the role of the regulator in a changing economy, including recent actions the ACCC has taken on infrastructure pricing, against cartel conduct and to improve consumer protection.
Waterfront & shipping
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has been notified of an access dispute between Glencore Coal Assets Australia Pty Ltd (Glencore) and Port of Newcastle Operations Pty Ltd (PNO) in relation to the shipping channel service at the port. Glencore notified the ACCC of the access dispute on 4 November 2016 and has requested that the ACCC arbitrate.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s 2015-16 Container Stevedoring Monitoring Report has found that increased competition in container stevedoring has pushed prices to their lowest level in seventeen years.
“Australia’s container stevedoring industry is experiencing a period of increased competition and investment in infrastructure,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
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 Chairman Rod Sims delivers a keynote address at the Ports Australia Conference in Melbourne. Mr Sims says appropriate regulatory regimes should be in place before assets with monopoly characteristics are privatised. He explains this is best achieved through a negotiate-arbitrate framework. Mr Sims also talks about recent engagement with governments on port regulation and some positive outcomes achieved.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s has released its annual container stevedoring monitoring report, which highlights the improved performance of the industry.
Average stevedoring prices for the industry fell for the second consecutive year and, in real terms, are now at the lowest level recorded by the monitoring program.
“We are continuing to see benefits of increased competition in the stevedoring industry, with lower average prices, continued investment and reports of improved customer service,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
Speaking at the Gilbert + Tobin infrastructure workshop in Melbourne, ACCC Chairman Rod Sims calls for a return to the approach to regulation of monopoly infrastructure envisaged by the Hilmer Committee. Mr Sims also argues that it is wrong to suggest that we should not be concerned about high monopoly pricing of infrastructure because the result is only a pure transfer of economic rent. Mr Sims also refers to the ACCC’s work with Australian governments to highlight the importance of privatising assets to promote competition, rather than just the sale price.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released its 16th annual container stevedoring monitoring report.
“Increased competition is delivering improvements in Australian stevedoring, which build on significant gains in the industry since the waterfront reforms of 1998. Cheaper imports and lower costs for exporters will see benefits flow through the economy,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.