11/07/2006 - 22:00

Push for tighter anti-predatory rules

11/07/2006 - 22:00

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The Western Australian government has called on its federal counterpart to beef up its Trade Practices Act (TPA) to help protect small business against predatory pricing by big business.

Push for tighter anti-predatory rules

The Western Australian government has called on its federal counterpart to beef up its Trade Practices Act (TPA) to help protect small business against predatory pricing by big business.

WA Small Business Minister Norm Marlborough made the call for a significant strengthening of the TPA at the recent Australian Small Business Ministerial Council in Melbourne.

“I am concerned the Howard government has ignored pleas from small business for greater protection under the TPA,” he said.

Mr Marlborough accused the federal government of forcing small business into an even more costly and complex court process than currently existed to prove predatory pricing by big business.

“It is already difficult for small business to prove predatory pricing; with this amendment, the Howard government is going to be making it even harder,” he said.

“The federal government’s position highlights its blatant disregard for the interests of small business.”

Predatory pricing is where a dominant business sells a product at a loss in order to drive some, or all, of its competitors out of the market. With fewer competitors, or possibly even a monopoly, the predatory business can then increase prices to compensate for earlier losses.

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