Friday, July 1, 2011

DOJ to act as competition authority

"DOJ to serve as 'competition authority' on domestic, international trade"
Sun Star Online, 16 June 2011
(Original article available here).

"MANILA -- MalacaƱang has designated the Department of Justice (DOJ) as the country’s “Competition Authority” to ensure fair domestic trade, as it pushes for antitrust measures that will curb monopolies, break-up cartels, and eliminate other abusive practices in business.
By virtue of Executive Order (EO) 45, MalacaƱang recognizes the need to promote competition and level the playing field in the market to encourage needed investments and safeguard the interest of the general public.
The order was signed by President Benigno Aquino III on June 9, 2011.

“The 16-point Agenda of the administration provides that this will be a government that creates conditions conducive to the growth and competitiveness of private businesses, big, medium, and small,” Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. said in a statement.

“The President’s policy, as he had stated during his first State of the Nation Address, called for measures that will allow and guarantee fair competition,” he added.

Under the EO, the DOJ is tasked to investigate all cases involving violations of competition laws and prosecute violators to prevent, restrain, and punish monopolization, cartels, and combinations in restraint of trade.

The DOJ is likewise ordered to enforce competition policies and laws to protect consumers from abusive, fraudulent, or harmful corrupt business practices; and supervise competition in markets by ensuring that prohibitions and requirements of competition laws are followed.

The DOJ is also tasked to monitor and implement measures to promote transparency and accountability in markets; as well as prepare, publish, and disseminate studies and reports on competition to inform and guide the industry and consumers.

The justice department is also charged to promote international cooperation and strengthen Philippine trade relations with other countries, economies, and institutions in trade agreements. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)"

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