Trade and Industry (Trade) Minister Lim Hng Kiang said the ASEAN Competition Policy and Law Programme is the first of its kind in the region that aims to bring key stakeholders of competition policy together.
The Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS) will lead efforts to develop an ASEAN Competition Policy and Law (CPL) Programme in order to promote collaboration amongst competition agencies in the region, said Trade and Industry Minister (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang on Wednesday (Apr 27).
Speaking at the International Competition Network’s annual conference, which CCS is hosting this year, Mr Lim said the CPL Programme will contribute towards the goal of alignment of competition policy and law in ASEAN. He said it will also help foster a culture of fair competition to create a level playing field for all businesses.
“Closer relationships between businesses, government agencies and competition authorities are the basis for greater convergence and harmonisation of competition policy and law regimes,” said Mr Lim.
The programme will promote closer collaboration and relationships among businesses, competition authorities and relevant government agencies in the region, said CCS, which is a statutory board under the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
This takes place against the backdrop of the ASEAN Economic Community, which aims to transform the ASEAN region into a competitive regional market. One such development is the rising trend of online spending, with e-commerce expected to grow by 25 per cent annually.
The programme’s objectives include equipping companies with the necessary knowledge to navigate the competition landscape in ASEAN as firms try to internationalise.
Mr Lim said competition is key to enabling the ASEAN Economic Community’s economic vision, as the region is expected to sustain an average growth of 5.2 per cent over the next five years.
He said: “To create a competitive, innovative and dynamic ASEAN, we need to foster a ‘competition-aware’ region that supports fair competition through the establishment of platforms for regarding exchange and engagement.”
The minister added that there is currently no such programme that brings key stakeholders of competition policy together in ASEAN, and that the CPL Programme aims to bridge this gap.
This will be done through a platform to allow stakeholders to network and build relationships, as well as building technical capabilities through workshops and staff attachments across government agencies.
The CPL programme is targeted to begin later this year.
Source: ChannelNewsAsia.com | 27 April 2016