CCAC creating business environment for full participation
Georgetown, GINA, July 5, 2016
The Consumer Affairs Unit of the Competition and Consumer Affairs Commission (CCAC) is working assiduously to bring businesses into compliance with the Consumers Affairs Act, head of the unit, Haroon Khan told the Government Information Agency.
Khan said the unit is pushing awareness in order for businesses to comply with the act “without having to take legal measures against a business enterprise.”
He added that, “All investigations are conducted in an objective fashion with technicians making an independent assessment of our cases.”
The Consumer Affairs Unit enforces the Consumer Affairs Act which aims to bring businesses into full compliance.
The Consumer Affairs Unit is one of two components of the CCAC, the other being the
the Competition Policy unit which enforces the Competition and Fair Trade Act. The latter unit functions in the capacity of ensuring that there is maintenance of a level playing field for all enterprises, and that they all compete fairly.
Both of these units fall under the purview of the Business and Tourism Ministry, headed by Minister Dominic Gaskin.
Head of the Competition Policy Unit (ag), Lusiean Mingo explained that, “The act promotes and maintains competition in Guyana and prevents any type of restrictions of competition. We guard against abuse of dominant positions and the prevention of anti-competitive agreements.”
Established in 2011, the CCAC became an agency through the CARIBFUND agreement which was signed by the Government of Guyana and the Caribbean Development Bank in 2010.
Director of the CCAC, Dawn Holder-Alert explained that, “The objective of this project is to assist in regulatory and institutional frameworks on competition in Guyana, to ensure effective and sound competition policies and enforcement.”
Greater competition in the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) was expected after its (CSME) implementation. This would have encouraged businesses to be engaged in conduct aimed at preserving market shares.
The Revised Treaty of Chagauramas provides rules for businesses to conduct themselves in this new environment, ensuring healthy competition and promoting consumer welfare in all states. This saw the establishment of the CARICOM Competition Commission (CCC) in 2008 which is a key institution in support of the CSME.
All CARICOM member states are required to have a competition act and an authority that will function under the act. This is called a “treaty obligation” thereby cooperating with the CCC and other competition authorities in the detection and prevention of any form of anti-business conduct.