Fair business: Awareness of competition laws vital, says CPP

Speakers shed light on Competition Act 2010 at seminar for businessmen

Our Correspondent January 29, 2016
Speakers shed light on Competition Act 2010 at seminar for businessmen. PHOTO: FILE


Speakers at a seminar organised by Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) on Friday stressed the need for awareness of competition laws to ensure good business practices geared towards protection of consumers.

They said competition laws existed in 150 countries to help consumers receive quality goods at reasonable price.

The seminar was held at Multan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI). It marked the conclusion of CCP’s National Road Show on Competition Law.

Under the National Road Show inaugurated on December 4, CCP teams headed by Chairperson Vadiyya Khalil and Members Shahzad Ansar and Ikramul Haque Qureshi toured 22 cities across the country and held seminars to raise awareness and encourage familiarisation with the competition laws.

Ansar and Qureshi said with the support of the business community, important objectives of the road how had been achieved.

“Focal persons will be appointed by the chambers of commerce to work with the CCP,” they said.

They said consumers could convey their complaints to the CCP through a phone call, using the CCP’s website or by fax.

They said the CCP had the powers to take suo motu action against businesses violating the competition laws. They said the CCP could impose fines upto Rs75 million.

They said the CCP could take action against unjustified raises in prices, sale of products at prices below their cost, conditional sale of products or services, agreements or cartelisation that affected the competitive environment, dissemination of false information to consumers, or false use of another firm’s trademark or packaging. They said the competition issues highlighted at the seminars had been noted by the CCP for action where required.

Qureshi said compliance with the competition law protected businesses from unfair practices and encouraged innovation, lawful profits and development. He encouraged businessmen to approach the CCP for advice regarding mergers.

Ansar explained the role of the Office of Fair Trading in dealing with illegal marketing practices. He shared contact details of the CCP to facilitate businessmen to file complaints regarding deceptive marketing tactics.

Earlier, former MCCI president Khawaja Muhammad Yousuf welcomed the CCP team. He said the CCP’s initiative to raise awareness among businesses about consumer rights should be lauded.

Yousaf said the economy needed a competitive business environment that ensured investors’ confidence and created conducive conditions for innovation and growth.

Participants of the seminars included businessmen from small and medium enterprises, corporate firms and multinational corporations.

They were briefed on the provisions of the Competition Act 2010, procedures related to filing complaints, merger filings, merger thresholds and other rules and regulations.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 30th,  2016.



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