The UN trade and development organization has agreed to partner with Fiji to provide technical assistance in further improving Fiji’s capacity and policies related to competition and consumer protection.
“Fair and equitable competition and consumer protection have been the cornerstones of the Bainimarama Government. In 2010, consumer protection, restrictive practices and price control responsibilities were incorporated into the functions of the Fiji Commerce Commission (FCC), for holistic implementation,” said the Acting Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Hon. Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) programme is expected to be finalised over the next few weeks. Its goal is to help the FCC build the capacity and provide the technical assistance to achieve the status of a dynamic and modernized competition and consumer protection regulator.
This comes as Fiji successfully participated in a Voluntary Peer Review of Competition Law and Policy held in Geneva, Switzerland on 6-10 July 2015.
The Peer Review and Conference provided an opportunity for participating nations to discuss the challenges faced in enforcing competition law.
“The Conference was also important as Fiji was able to network with other countries and exchange information on their experiences and cooperates in competition law and enforcement. To this end, Fiji and Austria have agreed to a have a Memorandum of Understanding with each other,” said Hon. Sayed-Khaiyum.
Fiji is one of only two countries in the region to have an established independent competition regulator. The other is Papua New Guinea.
It is expected that UNCTAD will visit Fiji in October this year as part of the next phase of the process, which is expected to roll-out the technical assistance programme.