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Pro-competitive regulation

Office of Regulation Review discussion paper

This paper was released in November 1992. The paper examines how pro- procompetitive regulation, and particularly restrictive trade competitive practices legislation, can best be used to improve market outcomes. It integrates the research and findings of recent Commission inquiries which have dealt with these issues.

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  • Contents


1   Introduction

2   The Role of Restrictive Trade Practices Regulation
2.1   Efficiency and competition
2.2   Efficiency and consumer interests

3   Regulation of Competitive Markets
3.1   Defining the market
3.2   Assessing competition
Industry concentration
Firm profitability
Barriers to entry
Barriers to imports
Countervailing market power
3.3   Regulating market practices
Anti-competitive agreements
Misuse of market power
Anti-competitive exclusive dealing
Resale price maintenance

Anti-competitive price discrimination
3.4   Regulating market structure
Effects of mergers on economic efficiency
Applying the mergers test
Divestiture powers
3.5   Summing up

4   Regulation of Monopolies
4.1   Natural monopolies
General approaches
Specific applications
Policy implications
4.2   Mandated monopolies
Community service obligations
Statutory marketing arrangements
4.3   The regulatory regime
Guaranteeing access to services
Preventing monopoly pricing - the role of the PSA

5   Scope of the Act
5.1   Exemptions to government agencies
Government business enterprises
Statutory marketing arrangements
5.2   Industry-specific regulation
5.3   Labour market exemptions
5.4   Intellectual property exemptions
Implications of the exemption

6   Administration versus Judicial Enforcement
6.1   Judicial enforcement
Prosecutions, civil actions and remedies
Statutory guidance for judicial interpretation
Jurisdiction and rules of evidence
6.2   Administrative measures
TPC guidelines
Industry codes of practice
Administrative settlements
Pre-merger notification

7   Summary
7.1   Focussing regulatory effort
7.2   Expanding the scope of the Act
7.3   Targeting administration and enforcement
7.4   Conclusion

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