The ACCC has released a draft determination proposing to grant authorisation to Camden Council, Campbelltown City Council, Liverpool City Council, Wingecarribee Shire Council and Wollondilly Shire Council (the Applicants) to collectively tender and contract for waste processing services until 1 July 2044.
The Applicants have sought to collectively tender and contract for the provision of services by one or more qualified contractors to receive, process, market and dispose of (by sale or otherwise) kerbside collected waste materials. The proposed conduct does not extend to kerbside collection services. The proposed period of authorisation is longer than normally authorised by the ACCC. However, on the information provided to the ACCC so far, we consider that in this case the longer period of authorisation is likely to better facilitate new investment in waste processing infrastructure, which the Applicants are seeking to achieve via the joint tender.
The ACCC is also proposing to authorise the Applicants (minus Liverpool City Council) to continue to give effect to their current processing contracts, which were entered into under a previous authorisation (A90886), until 31 May 2024. Authorisation for these current contracts would otherwise have expired in 2021.
The ACCC invites interested parties to make a submission on the draft determination. The deadline for submissions is 9 November 2018.
Authorisation provides a legal exemption where the likely public benefits outweigh the likely public detriments; collective tendering and contracting by the Applicants, who would otherwise be competing to acquire their waste processing services, may otherwise breach competition laws.
Further information about the application for authorisation, including information about making a submission in response to the draft determination, is available on the ACCC’s authorisation public register.