Agribusiness

Levelling the playing field for small business

Legislation passed in the Federal Senate will help level the playing field for small businesses, including farm businesses.

The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) welcomed the passage of the amended section 46 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA) through the Parliament.

The ‘Effects Test’ will bring s46 in line with the rest of the CCA and ensure the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has the additional provisions it needs to help level the playing field for small business.

NFF Chief Executive Tony Mahar said the passage of the Bill was a watershed moment for Australian competition policy.

“The NFF has been calling for the introduction of an ‘effects test’ since the concept was flagged in the Harper Review in 2014,” Mr Mahar said.

“The Government, in particular the National Party, should be credited for bringing this reform to fruition. The Government consulted widely and showed a willingness to listen to industry to get the settings right.”

The Bill also earned the support of the Greens, the Nick Xenaphon Team, One Nation and several independents.

“The wide spectrum of support across the Parliament shows this is not an ideological issue but one of fairness and pragmatism.

“We’d like to acknowledge the active support of NFF members and our valuable partnership with the Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA) and the Master Grocers of Australia (MGA) in assisting to get the result we did.

“The outcome has been a long time coming but the end result, a fairer operating environment for business including farm businesses, will be well worth it,” Mr Mahar said.

Source: NFF

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